A Sungkyunkwan University (SKKU) research team led by Professor Hwan Su Yoon from the Department of Biological Sciences discovered parallel evolution in red seaweeds and seed plants. The research team clarified the evolution by comparing the chlorophyll in 50 red seaweed species to that of 800 seed plants which have been reported so far. Red seaweed plants are, like laver and agar, a subtype of seaweed. Seed plants are the generic type of plants that have seeds. According to the research, both red seaweed plants and seed plants come from the same origin, but they have speciated in different directions. Although the two plant types do not share any evolutionary or environmental features, they have three types of chlorophyll in common. The research team identified that both plant types evolved in a way that stabilizes their chlorophyll structure. Through this discovery, the team issued a research paper claiming that different organisms share the same evolutionary direction. The results of this research are significant in that this is the first research to clarify the evolution of chlorophyll. The research paper was published in BMC Biology on September 2, 2016.
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