Plant Sciences

Plant Sciences Experts

W. John Kress

Research Botanist & Assistant Curator
National Museum Institute of the History of Art, Conservation and Museology
United States of America


Graduate School: Ph.D. (Botany) 1981, Department of Botany, Duke University, Durham, NC. (Advisor: D.E. Stone), College: B.A. (Biology) 1975, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA. (Advisor: P.B. Tomlinson).

Research Interest

Systematic Biology: systematics of Heliconia and other Zingiberales, especially with regards to reproductive biology, allozyme and molecular variation, and cladistic relationships; generic concepts in the Zingiberales; phylogeny and evolution of the monocotyledons.`Evolutionary Biology: plant reproductive biology; the evolution of breeding and pollination systems; genetic diversity and speciation in tropical angiosperms.`Conservation Biology: forest fragmentation, gene flow, and genetic variation in tropical and temperate plant species.


  • Kress WJ, Wurdack KJ, Zimmer EA, Weigt LA, Janzen DH. Use of DNA barcodes to identify flowering plants. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. 2005 Jun 7;102(23):8369-74.

  • Chase MW, Soltis DE, Olmstead RG, Morgan D, Les DH, Mishler BD, Duvall MR, Price RA, Hills HG, Qiu YL, Kron KA. Phylogenetics of seed plants: an analysis of nucleotide sequences from the plastid gene rbcL. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden. 1993 Jan 1:528-80.

  • Group CP, Hollingsworth PM, Forrest LL, Spouge JL, Hajibabaei M, Ratnasingham S, van der Bank M, Chase MW, Cowan RS, Erickson DL, Fazekas AJ. A DNA barcode for land plants. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2009 Aug 4;106(31):12794-7.

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