Importancia de Paraphyllanthoxylon en el reconocimiento de plantas en el Cretácico de Coahuila, México

  • Juliana P. Méndez-Cárdenas
  • Sergio R. S. Cevallos-Ferriz
Keywords: Paraphyllanthoxylon, morpho-genera, variation, Lauraceae, Anacardiaceae, Burseraceae, Cretaceous, Coahuila


Secondary xylem variation among angiosperm species of different genera has been explained based on the anatomy-ecology relationship. Since at times this information does not allow the establishment of clear limits between fossil species, the use of morpho-genera is used to describe particular wood anatomical patterns. This is the case in Paraphyllanthoxylon, whose secondary xylem has been reported in Anacardiaceae, Lauraceae, Burseraceae, Euphorbiaceae and Elaeocarpaceae. Convergence of anatomical characters makes it difficult to point out precise taxonomic relationships; however, based on principal component analysis (PCA), the maximal similarity among Paraphyllanthoxylon and extant OTU is proposed. In these analyses 39 wood anatomical characters were used to further understand similarities and differences among the studied OTU as well as, to proposed limits among the fossil and extant groups. The grouping of fossil OTU suggest that in fact they represent different taxa, with little natural variation. Ray characteristics, intervascular pits shape, and the presence/absence of pit borders are especially helpful to suggest associations. The Cretaceous Paraphyllanthoxylon of Coahuila can be associated with leaves of Lauraceae and/or Anacardiaceae collected in the same sediments, and if this association is confirmed the new extinct plants will broad the diversity concept of these families.