Borovichev, E.A., V.A. Bakalin & A.A. Vilnet. Revision of the Russian Marchantiales. II. A review of the genus Asterella P. Beauv. (Aytoniaceae, Hepaticae)
Arctoa (2015) 24: 294-313
The genus Asterella P. Beauv. includes four species in Russia: A. leptophylla and A. cruciata are restricted to the southern flank of the Russian Far East and two others, A. saccata and A. lindenbergiana occur mostly in the subartcic zone of Asia and the northern part of European Russia. Asterella cruciata is recorded for the first time in Russia. The study of the ribosomal LSU (or 26S) gene and trnL-F cpDNA intron confirmed the placement of Asterella gracilis in the genus Mannia and revealed the close relationship of A. leptophylla and A. cruciata, and the rather unrelated position of A. saccata and A. lindenbergiana. The phylogenetic tree includes robustly supported terminal clades, however with only weak support for deeper nodes. In general, Asterella species and M. gracilis from Russia show low levels of infraspecific variation. An identification key and species descriptions based on Russian specimens are provided, along with details of specimens examined, ecology and diagnostic characters of species.