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The genetic and molecular biological enigma of Deschampsia antarctica in Antarctica
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The genetical and molecular biological attributes of Deschampsia antarctica are considered in relation to its remarkable success in the colonization of the maritime Antarctic. However, none of the data from several published research studies provide convincing evidence that this species possess any obvious unique or specialised adaptations which might account for this success. While its occurrence appears to have spanned much of the Holocene, there is no evidence that there have ever been any other native vascular plant species in the maritime Antarctic. It is still unclear why no other taxa have succeeded in colonising this region. Further intensive studies of genetics and molecular biology of this species, and of other potential immigrants, may provide a better understanding of their enigmatic success in the maritime Antarctic.
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