The New York Botanical Garden


Fabian A. Michelangeli

Associate Curator, Institute of Systematic Botany

Ph.D., Cornell University
Ithaca, NY (2000)
Expertise: Systematics and taxonomy of Melastomataceae, ant-plant interactions, floristics of the Guayana Highlands


My research focuses on the evolution and systematics of Neotropical plants and animal-plant interactions. I have focused most of my research in the large tropical family Melastomataceae. Currently I am working on an analysis of relationships within the tribe Miconieae, using molecular, anatomy and morphological data, in collaboration with Walter Judd (University of Florida), Renato Goldenberg (Universidade Federal do Parana) and Frank Almeda (California Academy of Sciences). These phylogenies will be used for the study of character evolution within the group. I am also particularly interested in ant-plant symbiotic relationships, especially in those cases in which the ants nest on the plant, protecting the plant against herbivores (myrmecophytism). This type of associations is found in over 80 species of Melastomataceae and has evolved independently in different lineages.

Selected Publications

For complete list see CV.

Michelangeli, F. A., P. J. F. Guimaraes, D. S. Penneys, F. Almeda & R. Kriebel. 2013. Phylogenetic relationships and distribution of New World Melastomeae (Melastomataceae). Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society 171: 38-60. DOI: 10.1111/j.1095-8339.2012.01295.x.

Goldenberg, R., C. N. de Fraga, A. P. Fontana, A. N. Nicolas & F. A. Michelangeli. 2012. Taxonomy and Phylogeny of Merianthera (Melastomataceae). Taxon: 61: 1040-1056.

Trusty, J. L., A. Tye, T. M. Collins, F. A. Michelangeli, P. Madriz & J. Francisco-Ortega. 2012. Galápagos and Cocos Islands: so close and so distant. International Journal of Plant Sciences: 173: 36-53.

Michelangeli, F. A., A. Nicolas, M. E. Morales-P & H. David. 2011. Phylogenetic relationships of Allomaieta, Alloneuron, Cyphostyla and Wurdastom (Melastomataceae), and the resurrection of the tribe Cyphostyleae. International Journal of Plant Sciences 172: 1165-1178.

Penneys, D. S., F. A. Michelangeli, W. S. Judd, and F. Almeda. 2010. Henriettieae (Melastomataceae): A new Neotropical berry-fruited tribe. Systematic Botany 35: 783-800. DOI: 10.1600/036364410X539862.

Michelangeli, F. A. 2010. An annotated list and key of Neotropical Myrmecophylous Melastomataceae. Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences. Series 4. 61 (9): 409-449.

Galarda Varassin I., D. S. Penneys & F. A. Michelangeli. 2008. Comparative anatomy and morphology of nectar-producing Melastomataceae. Annals of Botany 102: 899-909. DOI: 10.1093/aob/mcn180.

Michelangeli, F. A., W. S. Judd, D. S. Penneys, J. D. Skean, Jr., E. R. Becquer, R. Goldenberg & C. V. Martin. 2008. Multiple events of dispersal and radiation of the tribe Miconieae (Melastomataceae) in the Caribbean. Botanical Review 74: 53-77. DOI: 10.1007/s12229-008-9004-x.