Dr Marco Pellegrini

Quality Assurance Officer & Team Leader

Marco Pellegrini

Digital Revolution


Digital Collections


Taxonomy, Nomenclature, Systematics, Biogeography, Digital Collections, Commelinales, aquatic plants

As Quality Assurance Officer & Team Leader for Digital Collections, I lead an in-house team tasked with digitising Kew's internationally important herbarium collection while ensuring the high quality of the produced images and of the transcribed data. Our current goal is to make Kew's Herbarium collection completely digital and available to scientists and regular people around the globe.

My research has focused on the taxonomy, nomenclature, systematics and biogeography of the order Commelinales, which includes the dayflowers and spiderworts (Commelinaceae), kangaroo paws and bloodroots (Haemodoraceae), pickerelweeds and mud plantains (Pontederiaceae), frogmouths (Philydraceae), and susums (Hanguanaceae).

My studies and publications have ranged from small nomenclatural notes to floristic studies, the description of new species, taxonomic monographs, to infrageneric classifications. My higher-level systematic studies on Commelinales contribute to an improved phylogeny combining macro- and micromorphological characters, ecology, cytology and phytochemistry with molecular data to provide a new, stable and reliable classification of the order.

I am also interested in the taxonomy and systematics of other groups of aquatic plants, like waterlilies and fanworts (Nymphaeales), flowering bog moss (Mayacaceae), riverweeds (Podostemaceae), and buttercups and water crowfoots (Ranunculaceae). Aquatic plants present distinctive morpho-ecological specialisations as a result of the extreme and inconstant environments they inhabit, creating unique challenges in understanding their taxonomy, biogeography and evolution.

  • BSc, Biology, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, 2013
  • MSc, Biodiversity and Evolutionary Biology, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, 2015
  • Visiting Researcher and Digitisation Officer, Botany, NMNH, Smithsonian Institution, 2016–2017
  • PhD, Botany, Universidade de São Paulo, 2019
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, Museu Paraense Emilio Goeldi, 2021–2022

Pellegrini, M.O.O., Hickman, E.J., Guttiérrez, J.E., Smith, R.J. & Hopper, S.D. (2020)

Revisiting the taxonomy of the Neotropical Haemodoraceae (Commelinales).

PhytoKeys 169: 1–59. 

Vita, R.S.B., Menezes, N.L., Pellegrini, M.O.O. & Melo-de-Pinna, G.F.A. (2019)

A new interpretation of the vascular architecture of the cauline system in Commelinaceae (Commelinales).

PLoS One 14: e0218383.

Pellegrini, M.O.O. & Carvalho, M.L.S. (2016)

The identity and application of Coletia madida Vell. and notes on the typification of Mayacaceae.

Taxon 65: 605–609.

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Marco Pellegrini