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Problems and prospects in the systematics of the Ascomycotina

  • D L Hawksworth
Article
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Abstract

The classification of the Ascomycotina remains one of the major problems in systematic mycology. A survey of the various systems proposed over the last five decades is presented identifying their key aspects. A table including outlines of 20 systems is provided. Constraints to developing a generally acceptable system are identified as arising from the size of the group, its geological age, assumption of phylogenetic concepts, data availability, convergence, delimitation of genera, and taxa remaining to be discovered. Progress towards an acceptable system must pay due regard to the users of taxonomy and have strong elements of stability. Data collection could be approached by concerted efforts of groups of specialists tackling particular orders in turn. It seems most appropriate to progress by building up the hierarchy from maximum information content groups, concentrating on delimiting monophyletic units in the ranks of order and family, and restricting hypothetical overall systems to specialist debate rather than recommending them for general use.

Keywords

Fungi Ascomycotina lichens systematics classification 

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Copyright information

© Indian Academy of Sciences 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • D L Hawksworth
    • 1
  1. 1.Commonwealth Mycological InstituteFerry LaneKewUK

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