Phylogeny of North American Cicindela tiger beetles inferred from multiple mitochondrial DNA sequences.Mol Phylogenet Evol. 1997 Oct; 8(2):225-35.MP
Tiger beetles in the genus Cicindela (Coleoptera: Cicindelidae) have been used as a model system for studies in ecology and conservation biology. Work on this group will greatly benefit from the availability of a phylogenetic hypothesis. We selected a representative sample of 23 North American Cicindela and 6 outgroups to reconstruct a phylogeny based on 1896 nucleotide positions from three mitochondrial genes (Cytochrome b, Cytochrome oxidase III, and 16S rRNA). Cladistic analysis of these three data sets yielded widely different tree topologies, but character conflict between them appears to be relatively low. The combined analysis of all data resulted in three similar shortest trees of 3453 steps. One of these was also recovered after successive weighting and was considered the best estimate of relationships. The most basal taxa of North American Cicindela (s.l.) were in the cosmopolitan subgenus Cylindera. The derived taxa were in the subgenus Cicindela (s. str.), a group dominating at higher latitudes in the Nearctic and Palearctic Region. The molecular analysis was essentially in agreement with the traditional classification which has been worked out based on male genitalic structures by E. Rivalier (1954, Rev. Entomol. Française 21:249-268). In the molecular analysis, Rivalier's species groups and subgenera were mostly found to be composed of closely related taxa but several of them were not monophyletic. Implicit in the traditional classification is a sequence from basal to derived groups which we found to be essentially reversed in the molecular analysis. We also discuss the conceptual differences in the establishment of the traditional classification by Rivalier (1954) and the cladistic analysis presented in this study.