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Sci. Pharm. 2009, 77(4), 851-876; doi:10.3797/scipharm.0905-10

Multivariate Numerical Taxonomy of Mentha Species, Hybrids, Varieties and Cultivars

1
Department of Pharmacognosy, University of Vienna, Althanstraße 14, 1090 Vienna, Austria
2
Department of Pharmacognosy and Botany, Faculty of Pharmacy, Comenius University, Odbojarov 10, 83 232 Bratislava, Slovakia
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 15 May 2009 / Accepted: 28 October 2009 / Published: 29 October 2009
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Abstract

A taxonomic study into the anatomical, morphological and phytochemical differentiation of the genus Mentha L (Lamiaceae) in Bosnia & Hercegovina and Slovakia is presented. Following a population-based approach and using hierarchical cluster analyses the following basic species and hybrids corresponding to exclusive branches, i.e. groups, in the constructed hierarchies were recognized: Mentha aquatica, M. spicata, M. arvensis, M. longifolia, M. rotundifolia, M. × piperita, M. × villosa, M. × verticillata, M. × gentillis, M. × gracilis and M. pulegium. These groups were independently found by separate analyses of the sampled anatomical and morphological variation. In contrast, these anatomically and morphologically defined species exhibited a high level of phytochemical polymorphism which was largely inconsistent with the hierarchical classification. Among the analysed characters, the inflorescence type, dentation of the leaf margin, hair density, the type of capitate glandular hairs, and the main containing compound in essential oil proved most useful for the discrimination of taxa. However, most of the observed traits were not exclusive to a particular species and only the combined consideration of traits revealed coherent taxonomic groups. Basic species and hybrids are described in detail based on the anatomical, morphological and phytochemical characters used for their definition. The performed cluster analysis finally supported hypotheses on the parentage of some of the studied hybrids.
Keywords: Mentha; Anatomy; Morphology; Essential oil; Biostatistics Mentha; Anatomy; Morphology; Essential oil; Biostatistics
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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ŠARIĆ-KUNDALIĆ, B.; FIALOVÁ, S.; DOBEŠ, C.; ÖLZANT, S.; TEKEĽOVÁ, D.; GRANČAI, D.; REZNICEK, G.; SAUKEL, J. Multivariate Numerical Taxonomy of Mentha Species, Hybrids, Varieties and Cultivars. Sci. Pharm. 2009, 77, 851-876.

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