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Gymnarrhena micrantha.jpg
Gymnarrhena micrantha
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Gymnarrhenoideae
Panero & V.A.Funk
Tribe: Gymnarrheneae
Panero & V.A.Funk

Gymnarrhenoideae is a subfamily with in the daisy family, with only one tribe, the Gymnarrheneae. Two very different species have been assigned to it, Gymnarrhena micrantha, a winter annual from the deserts of North-Africa and the Middle-East, and Cavea tanguensis, a perennial herb that grows on scree near streams and glaciers in the Eastern Himalayas. These species have very little in common, other than having two types of flower heads and sharing a tendency towards dioecism.[1][2] Both also have basal leaf rosettes, stretched leaves, with few spaced teeth on the margin, and both lack spines and latex.


The subfamily Gymnarrhenoideae and tribe Gymnarrheneae were erected in 2009 by Jose Panero and Vicki Funk to accommodate the isolated position of Gymnarrhena that is suggested by genetic analyses. A later analysis including rare species from China illustrated that Cavea is its sister taxon.[2][3]


Based on recent genetic analysis, it is now generally accepted that the Pertyoideae subfamily is sister to a clade that has as its basal member the Gymnarrhenoideae, and further consists of the Asteroideae, Corymbioideae and Cichorioideae. These three subfamilies share a deletion of nine base-pairs in the ndhF gene which is not present in Gymnarrhena micrantha. Current insights in the relationships of Gymnarrhena to the closest Asterid subfamilies is represented by the following tree.[2][3]

subfamily Pertyoideae

subfamily Gymnarrhenoideae

Gymnarrhena micrantha

Cavea tanguensis

subfamily Cichorioideae

Warionia saharae

all other Cichorioideae

subfamily Corymbioideae

subfamily Asteroideae


  1. ^ Panero, Jose L.; Funk, Vicki A. (2009), "New tribes in Asteraceae", Phytologia, 91 (3): 568–570
  2. ^ a b c Zhi-Xi Fu; Bo-Han Jiao; Bao Nie; Tiangang Gao (2016). "A comprehensive generic‐level phylogeny of the sunflower family: Implications for the systematics of Chinese Asteraceae". Journal of Systematics and Evolution. 54 (4): 416–437. Retrieved 2016-01-15.
  3. ^ a b Funk, Vicki A.; Fragman-Sapir, Ori (2009). "22. Gymnarrheneae (Gymnarrhenoideae)". In V.A. Funk, A. Susanna, T. Stuessy, R. Bayer (eds.). Systematics, Evolution, and Biogeography of Compositae (PDF). Vienna: International Association for Plant Taxonomy. pp. 327–332. Retrieved 2016-12-27.CS1 maint: uses editors parameter (link)