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Gnetum macrostachyum in Thailand.jpg
Gnetum macrostachyum in Thailand
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Division: Gnetophyta
Class: Gnetopsida
Order: Gnetales
Family: Gnetaceae
Genus: Gnetum
Map showing the range of Gnetum
  • Gnemon Rumph. ex Kuntze
  • Thoa Aubl.
  • Abutua Lour.
  • Arthostema Neck.

Gnetum is a genus of gymnosperms, the sole genus in the family Gnetaceae and order Gnetales. They are tropical evergreen trees, shrubs and lianas. Unlike other gymnosperms, they possess vessel elements in the xylem. Some species have been proposed to have been the first plants to be insect-pollinated as their fossils occur in association with extinct pollinating scorpionflies.[2] Molecular phylogenies based on nuclear and plastid sequences from most of the species indicate hybridization among some of the Southeast Asian species. Fossil-calibrated molecular-clocks suggest that the Gnetum lineages now found in Africa, South America and Southeast Asia are the result of ancient long-distance dispersal across seawater.[3][4]



Many Gnetum species are edible, with the seeds being roasted, and the foliage used as a leaf vegetable.[5]


  1. ^ Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  2. ^ Ren D, Labandeira CC, Santiago-Blay JA, Rasnitsyn A, Shih CK, Bashkuev A, Logan MA, Hotton CL, Dilcher D. (2009). Probable Pollination Mode Before Angiosperms: Eurasian, Long-Proboscid Scorpionflies. Science, 326 (5954), 840-847. doi:10.1126/science.1178338
  3. ^ Won H, Renner SS: The internal transcribed spacer of nuclear ribosomal DNA in the gymnosperm Gnetum. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 2005, 36:581-597. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2005.03.011
  4. ^ Won, H., and S. S. Renner. 2006. Dating dispersal and radiation in the gymnosperm Gnetum (Gnetales) – clock calibration when outgroup relationships are uncertain. Systematic Biology 55(4): 610-622. doi:10.1080/10635150600812619
  5. ^ Hoe, V.B. and Siong, K.H., "The Nutritional Value of Indigenous Fruits and Vegetables in Sarawak,"Asia-Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 8, no. 1, 1998, pp 24-31

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