Co-dispersal of symbionts in the reindeer lichen Cladonia stellaris

Cladonia stellaris
Marta just published her most recent paper in collaboration with Raquel Pino Bodas, an expert on Cladonia's biology.  In this recent paper, they explored the genetic diversity in the proposed Canadian national lichen, Cladonia stellaris. They genotyped 122 individuals collected across a latitudinal gradient in Quebec. Using a population genomic approach for the main fungus, they discovered that populations in southern Quebec are not genetically different from those of northern LWs. The mycobiont...
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Is the same moss species across the Arctic?

As part of his Ph.D. project, Dennis Escolástico and collaborators did research on cryptic speciation of a northern distributed moss. Wide spatial distribution ranges spanning different continents are characteristic of spore-dispersed organisms, such as plants and lichens. Bryophyte species exhibit worldwide and disjunct distributions as evidence of their vagility, but increasing research indicates that some widely distributed taxa with homogeneous morphology may represent separate evolut...
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Microbiome of reindeer lichens in Eastern North America

Cladonia mitis and Cladonia stellaris
Dr. Marta Alonso García is again looking at the biology and symbiosis of reindeer lichens. Why lichens are so important in the boreal forest ? Lichens cover nearly 7% of the earth’s surface and in eastern Canada, lichen woodlands occupy over 300,000 km2. Reindeer lichens (genus Cladonia), are the main component of lichen woodlands and they play a crucial role in boreal forest ecology. She studies, for the first time, the bacterial community of four species of reindeer lichens from eastern North ...
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Sandrine Toupin presents her Master’s project

A young and very talented québécoise student interested in symbiosis joined the lab in 2017 . After finishing her undergraduate studies, she started her M.Sc on cycad transcriptomics. Sandrine Toupin presented her work today, and starts a new chapter in her life. Sandrine did an excellent job putting together a de novo cycad transcriptome, and taking  a closer look at all plant lineages with endophytic cyanobacteria (Gunnera, hornworts, Blasia, Azolla) with new and published data. We wi...
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Reindeer lichens in the news!!

Our research on reindeer lichens has attracted quite a bit of attention from the press. In a recent paper led by our postdoctoral researcher, Dr. Marta Alonso García, she's brought new light on the biology of the reindeer lichens, especially Cladonia stellaris. The species has been proposed as our national lichen due to its ecological importance. We shared Marta's article and some press releases. Enjoy! Laval University PhysOrg EurekAlert! Vice
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Québec BL2021 – Joint Virtual Meeting- 6-9 July 2021

We are happy to confirm that we will host the Québec 2021 (July 6-9) joint meeting: "Bryophytes, lichens, and northern  ecosystems in a changing world". The Québec B(ryophytes) and L(ichens) will bring together prestigious bryological, botanical and lichenological societies. The event is organized by members of the four societies:  International Association of Bryology (IAB), the American Bryological and Lichenological Society (ABLS),  la Société Québécoise de Bryologie (SQB) and The Canadian Bo...
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Life without sex, the sad story of an emigrant

Sexual reproduction plays an essential role in species’ survival and maintenance and hence is, not surprisingly widespread across the Tree of Life. However, clonality and other forms of asexual reproduction do also exist, especially in plants. The hornwort Nothoceros aenigmaticus is a good example of a plant reproducing asexually and clonally as its male plants seem to produce non-functional sperm cells. This hornwort is distributed in the Southern Appalachians (SA) (United States), Mexico a...
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Coralloid roots on the cover of the journal Environmental DNA

One of the photos in the paper by Philip Bell-Doyon and colleagues made the cover of the journal Environmental DNA. The photo was taken by Jorge Ceballos and Maycol Madrid (Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama). A summary of the paper: Using a combination of Sanger-sequencing, 16S metagenomics and whole-genome sequencing, we have elucidated the bacteriome of  the corralled roots of the only epiphytic gymnosperm. One hundred and sixty‐five amplicon sequence variants (ASVs) were f...
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