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The Geography of Phytochemical Races

Un libro in lingua di Bohm Bruce A. edito da Springer Verlag, 2008

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This book provides an overview of geographic patterns in the distribution of plant secondary metabolites in natural populations. Examples include most common natural product classes: acetylenic derivatives; alkaloids; carotenoids; cyanogenic glycosides; flavonoids; terpenes of various sizes; as well as other structural types less easily categorized. By comparison, earlier reports in the literature on "chemical races" focused either on individual classes of compounds, on specific taxa, or on a particular geographic area. Following an introduction that includes definitions of phytochemical and biogeographic ideas, information is presented in five loosely defined categories.
It is the underlying idea in evolution that natural variation is the raw material upon which selection works. It seems reasonable to suggest that this is as true with plant secondary metabolites as with any other feature that confers an advantage to one set of individuals over antiherbivore or antifungal activity of plants as they colonize new habitats.

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