TAXON 65 (2) • April 2016: 391
Cardiel & Muñoz-Rodríguez • (2429–2430) Conserve Acalypha communis and A. brasiliensis
(2429–2430) Proposals to conserve the names Acalypha communis against A. hirsuta and A. brasiliensis against A. subsana (Euphorbiaceae) José María Cardiel1 & Pablo Muñoz-Rodríguez2 1 Departamento de Biología, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Ciudad Universitaria de Cantoblanco, Postal Code 28049, Madrid, Spain 2 Department of Plant Sciences, University of Oxford, South Parks Road, Oxford OX1 3RB, U.K. Author for correspondence: José María Cardiel, [email protected]
(2429) Acalypha communis Müll. Arg. in Linnaea 34: 23. Mar 1865 [Angiosp.: Euphorb.], nom. cons. prop. Lectotypus (vide Cardiel & al. in Taxon 62: 1299. 2013): Brazil, Minas Gerais, Widgren (S No. S07-12617; isolectotypus: BR No. 699782). (=) Acalypha hirsuta Mart. ex Colla, Herb. Pedem. 5: 114. 6–30 Apr 1836, nom. rej. prop. Lectotypus (vide Moraes & al. in Harvard Pap. Bot. 19: 145. 2014): Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, Magé/Petrópolis, “Serra dʼ Estrelle” (TO). (2430) Acalypha brasiliensis Müll. Arg. in Linnaea 34: 37. Mar 1865 [Angiosp.: Euphorb.], nom. cons. prop. Lectotypus (vide Cardiel & Muñoz-Rodríguez in Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 101: 390. 2015): Brazil, Bahia, Ponco d’Arcia, Jun 1844, Blanchet 3865 (G-DC barcode G00324483; isolectotypi: BM barcode BM000939658, G barcodes G00383646, G00383647 & G00383648, P barcode P00635212). (=) Acalypha subsana Mart. ex Colla, Herb. Pedem. 5: 113. 6–30 Apr 1836, nom. rej. prop. Lectotypus (vide Moraes & al. in Harvard Pap. Bot. 19: 145. 2014): Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, “cap: Frio”, Communic Martius 1827 [Wied] (TO; isolectotypus: BM barcode BM001125229). Acalypha communis Müll. Arg. is widely distributed in Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay, appearing as the most frequent species of the genus in the north of the Southern Cone. It is a highly polymorphic species, with up to 18 varieties and forms described; most of them have been currently summarized into five subspecies, which involve up to 18 homotypic and heterotypic synonyms (Cardiel & al. in Taxon 62: 1296–1304. 2013). Acalypha communis has been repeatedly mentioned in most general taxonomic and floristics treatments of the genus published in the last 150 years, as well as in all the national or regional floras or checklists of the aforementioned countries. It also has been the subject of biochemical (Gutiérrez & al. in J. Nat. Prod. (Lloydia) 65: 872–875. 2002), pharmacological (Salazar-Aranda & al. in Shahid & al., Recent Trends Biotechnol. Therap. Applic. Med. Pl.: 131–188. 2013), and ethnobotanical (Arias in Bol. Latinoamer. Caribe Pl. Med. Aromát. 8: 389–401. 2009) studies. Acalypha brasiliensis Müll. Arg. is widely distributed in southern Brazil and northeastern Argentina. Like A. communis, it has been cited in most general taxonomic and floristic treatments of the genus,
as well as in floras and checklists of Argentina, Brazil and the Southern Cone. Seven varieties of A. brasiliensis have been described, all of them based on Brazilian collections. The names A. communis and A. brasiliensis are recorded 40 and 6 times respectively in papers and books included in the Biodiversity Heritage Library (http://www. biodiversitylibrary.org/, last accessed 15 Dec 2015). Google Scholar reports 162 and 68 citations respectively (http://scholar.google.es/, last accessed 15 Dec 2015). Acalypha hirsuta and A. subsana were described in Herbarium Pedemontanum volume 5 by Aloysio Colla (1836), based on Brazilian plants distributed by Carl Martius in 1827. The names, written on the herbarium sheets, were proposed by Martius. The protologues of each species are brief and insufficient to characterize them. In addition, the type specimens only show their location: “Serra dʼ Estrelle” and “cap: Frio” respectively. Acalypha hirsuta and A. subsana were ignored by almost all the subsequent botanical literature. They do not appear in Müller Argoviensis’s global treatment of Acalypha (in Candolle, Prodr. 15(2): 799–889. 1866), nor in that of Pax & Hoffmann (in Engler, Pflanzenr. IV, 147 (Heft 85): 12–177. 1924). Only Govaerts & al. (World Checkl. Bibliogr. Euphorbiaceae 1: 90, 101. 2000) cited both names, the latter as an accepted species. Acalypha subsana is also reported by Cardiel (in Campostrini & Leitman, Cat. Pl. Fungos Brasil 2: 954. 2010). There are no records of these names in the Biodiversity Heritage Library; records under “Acalypha hirsuta” refer to “Acalypha hirsuta Hochst. ex A. Rich.” (Tent. Fl. Abyss. 2: 248. 1850), not a validly published name as Richard included it only as a synonym of A. villicaulis Hochst. ex A. Rich. (l.c.). Google Scholar reports one citation. Recently, Moraes & al. (in Harvard Pap. Bot. 19: 143–155. 2014) studied the Brazilian plants published by Colla in volume 5 of Herbarium Pedemontanum, in order to clarify the identity of his names. The original materials examined by Colla were identified, and A. hirsuta and A. subsana were lectotypified and considered conspecific with A. communis and A. brasiliensis, respectively. Thus, the application of the current Melbourne Code (McNeill & al. in Regnum Veg. 154. 2012) would place A. communis and A. brasiliensis, published in 1865, as synonyms of A. hirsuta and A. subsana, published in 1836. The conservation of the names Acalypha communis and A. brasiliensis, over A. hirsuta and A. subsana, would preserve two well-established names that have been in place for 150 years, thereby serving nomenclatural stability. It would also prevent undesirable changes affecting taxonomic, floristic, biochemical and ethnobotanical studies. Accepting the earlier names, almost never used, would be disruptive and would only contribute to confusion.
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