What are polyploid plants?

1 Answer
Jan 26, 2018

Polyploidy occurs when an error in sexual reproduction occurs and a resulting organism has extra sets of chromosomes.


Unlike in animals, polyploidy in plants often does not kill the new born tree. Plants are capable of dealing with polyploidy as it has become a part of their evolution and speciation. It is a common cause of speciation through reproductive isolation and hybridisation. However only particularly fit lineages of polyploidy may persist to enjoy longer term evolutionary success.

Polyploidy has many effects on the genetics of the plants. Such plants tend to be much larger than their diploid counterparts. It also occurs naturally in many types of plant tissues. The endosperms, which creates the fruit in angiosperms, becomes triploid when fertilization occurs and as it replicates it can undergo many rounds of endoreplication which can increase its polyploidy up to 5n.