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Mol Phylogenet Evol [journal]
- A comprehensive species-level molecular phylogeny of the New World blackbirds (Icteridae). [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 27.
The New World blackbirds (Icteridae) are among the best known songbirds, serving as a model clade in comparative studies of morphological, ecological, and behavioral trait evolution. Despite wide interest in the group, as yet no analysis of blackbird relationships has achieved comprehensive species-level sampling or found robust support for most intergeneric relationships. Using mitochondrial gene sequences from all ∼108 currently recognized species and six additional distinct lineages, together with strategic sampling of four nuclear loci and whole mitochondrial genomes, we were able to resolve most relationships with high confidence. Our phylogeny is consistent with the strongly-supported results of past studies, but it also contains many novel inferences of relationship, including unexpected placement of some newly-sampled taxa, resolution of relationships among major clades within Icteridae, and resolution of genus-level relationships within the largest of those clades, the grackles and allies. We suggest taxonomic revisions based on our results, including restoration of Cacicus melanicterus to the monotypic Cassiculus, merging the monotypic Ocyalus and Clypicterus into Cacicus, restoration of Dives atroviolaceus to the monotypic Ptiloxena, and naming Curaeus forbesi to a new monotypic genus, Anumara. Our hypothesis of blackbird phylogeny provides a foundation for ongoing and future evolutionary analyses of the group.
- Phylogeny of the family Aglajidae (Pilsbry, 1895) (Heterobranchia: Cephalaspidea) inferred from mtDNA and nDNA. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 27.
The family Aglajidae includes several species of benthic, carnivorous cephalaspidean sea slugs, which generally lack a radula, have an internal shell, a posterior shield with short to moderate caudal lobes, and sensory cilia present on the head. The present study reports a phylogenetic analysis of the Aglajidae based on the mitochondrial genes 16S and CO1 and the nuclear gene H3, including 160 specimens of 54 species, that confirms the monophyly of Aglajidae as well as most taxonomically established genera, with some exceptions. Although support values are low for some clades, the analysis recovered the following clades within the Aglajidae: Odontoglaja, Nakamigawaia, and Melanochlamys. Chelidonura appears to be paraphyletic and the monophyly of a Chelidonura-Navanax-Aglaja clade is strongly supported in the Bayesian analysis, plus three of the four individual gene trees (COI, COI without 3rd codon positions, 16S and H3). However, the relatively low levels of support in the maximum likelihood analyses prevent us from proposing the synonymization of Navanax and Aglaja with Chelidonura. Melanochlamys is the sister clade of Chelidonura+Aglaja+Navanax. Odontoglaja is basal to the rest of the Aglajidae, confirming previous hypotheses on the loss of the radula in Aglajidae. Nakamigawaia and Melanochlamys are monophyletic, and should be maintained as valid. The monophyly of Philinopsis is strongly supported in the Bayesian analysis and in three of the four individual gene trees. Further research on this group is necessary to further affirm the monophyly of Chelidonura+Aglaja+Navanax and Philinopsis. Based on the results of this phylogenetic analysis, a reclassification of the taxonomy of Aglajidae is probably necessary. Additional genes should provide more information and probably fully resolve this situation. The present molecular study (including ABGD species delineation analyses) suggests the existence of previously undetected species complexes that require additional study to determine the extent of undocumented biodiversity.
- Modeling lineage and phenotypic diversification in the New World monkey (Platyrrhini, Primates) radiation. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 25.
Adaptive radiations that have taken place in the distant past can now be more thoroughly studied with the availability of large molecular phylogenies and comparative data drawn from extant and fossil species. Platyrrhines are a good example of a major mammalian evolutionary radiation confined to a single continent, involving a relatively large temporal scale and documented by a relatively small but informative fossil record. Here, we present comparative evidence using data on extant and fossil species to explore alternative evolutionary models in an effort to better understand the process of platyrrhine lineage and phenotypic diversification. Specifically, we compare the likelihood of null models of lineage and phenotypic diversification versus various models of adaptive evolution. Moreover, we statistically explore the main ecological dimension behind the platyrrhine diversification. Contrary to the previous proposals, our study did not find evidence of a rapid lineage accumulation in the phylogenetic tree of extant platyrrhine species. However, the fossil-based diversity curve seems to show a slowdown in diversification rates toward present times. This also suggests an early high rate of extinction among lineages within crown Platyrrhini. Finally, our analyses support the hypothesis that the platyrrhine phenotypic diversification appears to be characterized by an early and profound differentiation in body size related to a multidimensional niche model, followed by little subsequent change (i.e., stasis).
- An evaluation of sampling effects on multiple DNA barcoding methods leads to an integrative approach for delimiting species: A case study of the North American tarantula genus Aphonopelma (Araneae, Mygalomorphae, Theraphosidae). [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 23.
The North American tarantula genus Aphonopelma provides one of the greatest challenges to species delimitation and downstream identification in spiders because traditional morphological characters appear ineffective for evaluating limits of intra- and interspecific variation in the group. We evaluated the efficacy of numerous molecular-based approaches to species delimitation within Aphonopelma based upon the most extensive sampling of theraphosids to date, while also investigating the sensitivity of randomized taxon sampling on the reproducibility of species boundaries. Mitochondrial DNA (cytochrome c oxidase subunit I) sequences were sampled from 682 specimens spanning the genetic, taxonomic, and geographic breadth of the genus within the United States. The effects of random taxon sampling compared traditional Neighbor-Joining with three modern quantitative species delimitation approaches (ABGD, P ID(Liberal), and GMYC). Our findings reveal remarkable consistency and congruence across various approaches and sampling regimes, while highlighting highly divergent outcomes in GMYC. Our investigation allowed us to integrate methodologies into an efficient, consistent, and more effective general methodological workflow for estimating species boundaries within the mygalomorph spider genus Aphonopelma. Taken alone, these approaches are not particularly useful - especially in the absence of prior knowledge of the focal taxa. Only through the incorporation of multiple lines of evidence, employed in a hypothesis-testing framework, can the identification and delimitation of confident species boundaries be determined. A key point in studying closely related species, and perhaps one of the most important aspects of DNA barcoding, is to combine a sampling strategy that broadly identifies the extent of genetic diversity across the distributions of the species of interest and incorporates previous knowledge into the "species equation" (morphology, molecules, and natural history).
- Detecting cryptic species in phylogeographic studies: Speciation in the California Slender Salamander, Batrachoseps attenuatus. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 22.
A study of DNA sequence variation in the plethodontid salamander Batrachoseps attenuatus by Martínez-Solano et al. (2007) revealed more species than acknowledged by the authors. They sequenced 677 base pairs of the cytochrome-b mitochondrial gene in 178 individuals from 123 populations of the currently recognized species B. attenuatus from throughout most of its known range in southwestern Oregon and northern and central California. Their data show that the common ancestor of the species diverged into five clades during the late Miocene Epoch, an estimated 9.2-5.5mya, with subsequent divergences producing at least 39 living lineages that replace each other geographically. These groups have been diverging independently from each other throughout the Pleistocene Epoch and many of them have probably reached the species level of divergence.
- Intraspecific lineages of the lizard Phrynocephalus putjatia from the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau: Impact of physical events on divergence and discordance between morphology and molecular markers. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 20.
The Northeastern Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau (NQTP) contains many physical features that may have contributed to its rich biological diversity. We explored the systematics and genetic structures of the sand lizards Phrynocephalus putjatia, distributed across semi-deserts or rocky steppe habitats, and Phrynocephalusguinanensis, found only in sand dune habitats, from the NQTP using mitochondrial (ND2 and tRNAs) and nuclear (RAG-1) markers. Bayesian analyses revealed two main monophyletic mtDNA groups that separate populations of the Qinghai Lake Basin (QLB) from populations to the southeast of this basin (SEQL), but these did not correspond to the two morphological species. The QLB populations are divided into western and eastern groups. Two major groups with similar geographical structuring were also detected for the nuclear RAG-1 marker, but with some geographical discordance. A Bayesian species delimitation analysis did not support division of P. putjatia/P. guinanensis into separate species. Bayesian dating of mtDNA suggests that the earliest divergence within this group occurred less than 2Ma, which seems to be explained by mountain uplift between the QLB and the SEQL regions. Other Pleistocene events may explain further genetic structuring. Overall, we do not detect reciprocal monophyly of markers between morphological species but note that they do appear to represent ecological forms.
- Molecular phylogeny of the Thyropygus allevatus group of giant millipedes and some closely related groups. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 20.
Giant cylindrical millipedes of the family Harpagophoridae, especially species of the genus Thyropygus, are broadly distributed in Thailand and nearby countries. They show a great deal of variation in body size, color patterns and gonopodal characters. Phylogenetic analyses of 26 nominate species from six genera in the subfamilies Harpagophorinae and Rhynchoproctinae, as well as nine new morphotypes (regarded as new species), were performed with the DNA sequences from two mitochondrial gene fragments (16S rRNA and COI). The genus Thyropygus (Harpagophorinae) was recovered as monophyletic under all analyses, whilst the representatives of Rhynchoproctinae also formed a monophyletic group. However, the analyses suggested that the tribe Gonoplectini should be elevated to a separate subfamily, Gonoplectinae. The molecular analyses were largely (but not totally) congruent with, and so supported the usefulness of, gonopodal characters for the classification and identification of harpagophorid millipedes, and additionally supported previous studies on the delimitation of species and subgroups. This is the first molecular study inside the family Harpagophoridae and provides the basis for further studies of the evolutionary processes and biogeographic patterns of millipedes in Southeast Asia.
- Phylogeographic analysis of introns and mitochondrial DNA in the clam Ruditapes decussatus uncovers the effects of Pleistocene glaciations and endogenous barriers to gene flow. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 20.
Studies on the phylogeography of species inhabiting the Mediterranean and the nearby coasts of the NE Atlantic Ocean (MEDAT) have found subdivision and/or phylogeographic structure in one or more of the Atlantic, western Mediterranean and eastern Mediterranean basins. This structure has been explained as the result of past population fragmentation caused by Pleistocene sea level changes and current patterns of marine circulation. However, the increasing use of nuclear markers has revealed that these two factors alone are not enough to explain the phylogeographic patterns, and an additional role has been suggested for endogenous barriers to gene flow or natural selection. In this article we examined the role of these factors in Ruditapes decussatus, a commercial clam species native to MEDAT. A genetic analysis of 11 populations was carried out by examining 6 introns with a PCR-RFLP technique. We found subdivision in three regions: Atlantic (ATL), western Mediterranean plus Tunisia (WMED), and Aegean and Adriatic seas (AEGAD). Two introns (Ech and Tbp) showed alleles that were restricted to AEGAD. Sequencing a subsample of individuals for these introns indicated that AEGAD-specific alleles were separate clades, thus revealing a phylogeographic brake at the WMED-AEGAD boundary. Sequencing of the mitochondrial COI locus confirmed this phylogeographic break. Dating of the AEGAD mitochondrial haplotypes and nuclear alleles with a Bayesian MCMC method revealed that they shared common ancestors in the Pleistocene. These results can be explained in the framework of Pleistocene sea level drops and patterns of gene flow in MEDAT. An additional observation was a lack of differentiation at COI between the ATL and WMED, in sharp contrast with 4 introns that showed clear genetic subdivision. Neutrality tests did not support the hypothesis of a selective sweep acting on mtDNA to explain the contrasting levels of differentiation between mitochondrial and nuclear markers across the ATL-WMED transition, and we argue that the difference between markers is best explained by the existence of an endogenous genetic barrier, rather than by a physical barrier to larval migration alone .
- Cryptic genetic diversity and complex phylogeography of the boreal North American scorpion, Paruroctonus boreus (Vaejovidae). [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 21.
Diverse studies in western North America have revealed the role of topography for dynamically shaping genetic diversity within species though vicariance, dispersal and range expansion. We examined patterns of phylogeographical diversity in the widespread but poorly studied North American vaejovid scorpion, Paruroctonus boreus Girard 1854. We used mitochondrial sequence data and parsimony, likelihood, and Bayesian inference to reconstruct phylogenetic relationships across the distributional range of P. boreus, focusing on intermontane western North America. Additionally, we developed a species distribution model to predict its present and historical distributions during the Last Glacial Maximum and the Last Interglacial Maximum. Our results documented complex phylogeographic relationships within P. boreus, with multiple, well-supported crown clades that are either geographically-circumscribed or widespread and separated by short, poorly supported internodes. We also observed subtle variation in predicted habitat suitability, especially at the northern, eastern and southern edges of the predicted distributional range under past climatic conditions. The complex phylogenetic relationships of P. boreus suggests that historical isolation and expansion of populations may have occurred. Variation in the predicted distributional range over time may implicate past climatic fluctuations in generating the patterns of genetic diversity observed in P. boreus. These findings highlight both the potential for cryptic biodiversity in widespread North American scorpion species and the importance of phylogeographical studies for understanding the factors responsible for generating the biodiversity of western North America.
- Light shines through the spindrift - Phylogeny of African torrent frogs (Amphibia, Anura, Petropedetidae). [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Mol Phylogenet Evol 2013 Nov 15.
Torrent frogs of the genus Petropedetes Reichenow, 1874 as currently understood have a disjunct distribution with species endemic to West, Central or East Africa. We herein present a phylogenetic analysis including all but one of the currently described 12 species of the genus. Maximum Likelihood and Bayesian analyses of combined nuclear (rag1, SIA, BDNF) and mitochondrial (16S, 12S, cytb) genes of more than 3500 base pairs, revealed clades corresponding to the three sub-Saharan regions. Molecular results are confirmed by morphological differences. Surprisingly, the three geographic clades do not form a monophyletic group with respect to closely related families Pyxicephalidae and Conrauidae and therefore require taxonomic changes. We resurrect Arthroleptides Nieden, 1911 for the East African taxa. The Central African taxa remain in the genus Petropedetes. The West African members are placed in the new genus Odontobatrachus gen. nov. The phylogenetic position of the new genus remains incertae sedis as it was not assigned to any of the four families included in our analyses. Potential new species have been detected within all three major clades, pointing to a still not fully clarified diversity within African torrent frogs.