What is it about?

The chemical composition of Mikania micrantha varies geographically, and follows a mosaic pattern. The chemical diversity of this species is also inversely associated to local herbivore attack.

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Why is it important?

This is the first report of an inverse relationship between chemical diversity and herbivory in natural field plant populations. Identifying geographic zones where plants of an invasive species are chemically different can be helpful when looking for potential biological control agents.

Perspectives

This was our first step towards understanding how the chemical composition of a plant is distributed geographically. Further efforts would focus on studying its relationship with genetic diversity and herbivore preference.

Angel E Bravo-Monzón
Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico

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This page is a summary of: Chemical diversity among populations of Mikania micrantha: geographic mosaic structure and herbivory, Oecologia, August 2013, Springer Science + Business Media, DOI: 10.1007/s00442-013-2748-y.
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