Sara B. Hoot
Work in the field of plant systematics is a little like a good detective novel I reconstruct evolutionary events that occurred in the past by working with the clues left on earth today. Because evolutionary relationships are often difficult to reconstruct, I use multiple data sets such as DNA sequences, morphology, and palynology (pollen morphology). The data are analysed using sophisticated computer programs, resulting in evolutionary trees that can be used to address such questions as how particular plant characteristics evolved over time or clues as to why a plant group has its current geographical distribution.
Presently, I am actively working on systematic questions in the following taxonomic groups: Ranunculales, Ranunculaceae, Menispermaceae, Anemone (within Ranunculaceae), and, in collaboration with W. Carl Taylor, Isoëtaceae. For more about both past and present research in my laboratory, click on "Research Interests". To see more about my academic background and present employment, go to CV or the Department of Biological Sciences' Faculty webpage
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