The number and diversity of source populations may influence the genetic diversity of newly introduced populations and affect the likelihood of their establishment and spread. We used the cytochrome b mitochondrial gene and nuclear microsatellite loci to identify the sources of a successful invader in southern Florida, USA, Cichlasoma urophthalmus (Mayan cichlid). Our cytochrome b data supported an introduction from Guatemala, while our microsatellite data suggested movement of Mayan Cichlids from the upper Yucatán Peninsula to Guatemala and introductions from Guatemala and Belize to Florida. The mismatch between mitochondrial and nuclear genomes suggests admixture of a female lineage from Guatemala, where all individuals were fixed for the mitochondrial haplotype found in the introduced population, and a more diverse but also relatively small number of individuals from Belize. The Florida cytochrome b haplotype appears to be absent from Belize (0 out of 136 fish screened from Belize had this haplotype). Genetic structure within the Florida population was minimal, indicating a panmictic population, while Mexican and Central American samples displayed more genetic subdivision. Individuals from the Upper Yucatán Peninsula and the Petén region of Guatemala were more genetically similar to each other than to fish from nearby sites and movement of Mayan Cichlids between these regions occurred thousands of generations ago, suggestive of pre-Columbian human transportation of Mayan Cichlids through this region. Mayan Cichlids present a rare example of cytonuclear disequilibrium and reduced genetic diversity in the introduced population that persists more than 30 years (at least 7-8 generations) after introduction. We suggest that hybridization occurred in ornamental fish farms in Florida and may contribute their establishment in the novel habitat. Hybridization prior to release may contribute to other successful invasions.
Most genetic studies of Holocene fauna have been performed with ancient samples from dry and cold regions, in which preservation of fossils is facilitated and molecular damage is reduced. Ancient DNA work from tropical regions has been precluded owing to factors that limit DNA preservation (e.g. temperature, hydrolytic damage). We analysed ancient DNA from rodent jawbones identified as Ototylomys phyllotis, found in Holocene and Late Pleistocene stratigraphic layers from Loltún, a humid tropical cave located in the Yucatan peninsula. We extracted DNA and amplified six short overlapping fragments of the cytochrome b gene, totalling 666 bp, which represents an unprecedented success considering tropical ancient DNA samples. We performed genetic, phylogenetic and divergence time analyses, combining sequences from ancient and modern O. phyllotis, in order to assess the ancestry of the Loltún samples. Results show that all ancient samples fall into a unique clade that diverged prior to the divergence of the modern O. phyllotis, supporting it as a distinct Pleistocene form of the Ototylomys genus. Hence, this rodent's tale suggests that the sister group to modern O. phyllotis arose during the Miocene-Pliocene, diversified during the Pleistocene and went extinct in the Holocene.
Host-parasite systems provide an ideal platform to study evolution at different levels, including codivergence in a historical biogeography context. In this study we aim to describe biogeographic and codivergent patterns and associated processes of the Goodeinae freshwater fish and their digenean parasite (Margotrema spp.) over the last 6.5 Ma (million years), identifying the main factors (host and/or hydrogeomorphology) that influenced the evolution of Margotrema. We obtained a species tree for Margotrema spp. using DNA sequence data from mitochondrial and nuclear molecular markers (COI and ITS1, respectively) and performed molecular dating to discern divergence events within the genus. The dispersal-extinction-cladogenesis (DEC) model was used to describe the historical biogeography of digeneans and applied to cophylogenetic analyses of Margotrema and their goodeine hosts. Our results showed that the evolutionary history of Margotrema has been shaped in close association with its geographic context, especially with the geological history of central Mexico during the Pleistocene. Host-specificity has been established at three levels of historical association: a) Species-Species, represented by Xenotaenia resolanae-M. resolanae exclusively found in the Cuzalapa River Basin; b) Species-Lineage, represented by Characodon audax-M. bravoae Lineage II, exclusive to the Upper and Middle Mezquital River Basin, and c) Tribe-Lineage, including two instances of historical associations among parasites and hosts at the taxonomical level of tribe, one represented by Ilyodontini-M. bravoae Lineage I (distributed across the Ayuquila and Balsas River Basins), and another comprised of Girardinichthyini/Chapalichthyini-M. bravoae Lineage III, found only in the Lerma River Basin. We show that the evolutionary history of the parasites is, on several occasions, in agreement with the phylogenetic and biogeographic history of their hosts. A series of biogeographic and host-parasite events explain the codivergence patterns observed, in which cospeciation and colonisation via host-switching and vicariant plus dispersal events are appreciated, at different times during the diversification history of both associates, particularly during the Pleistocene.
Despite some studies of the species groups within the genus Peromyscus have been performed, both evolutionary relationships among species within groups and group composition have remained controversial. In this study, we address phylogenetic relationships among species in the Peromyscus melanophrys group (P. melanophrys, P. perfulvus, and P. mekisturus), using a molecular phylogenetic analysis. This analysis is the first to include the poorly known P. mekisturus. We conducted maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference analyses with the ND3, tRNA-Arginine, ND4L, and partial ND4 mitochondrial genes, and the GHR nuclear gene. We consistently recovered a P. melanophrys group that is monophyletic with respect to the set of outgroups. Also, we recovered two distinct clades within P. perfulvus and two within P. melanophrys, one of which contain P. mekisturus among other P. melanophrys, all with geographic consistency. According to our divergence time estimates, the P. melanophrys group diverged during the Pliocene and the main diversification events within the group occurred at the end of the Pliocene and through the Pleistocene.
Abstract :? Genetic analyses of hosts and their parasites are key to understand the evolutionary patterns and processes that have shaped host-parasite associations. We evaluated the genetic structure of the digenean Crassicutis cichlasomae and its most common host, the Mayan cichlid "Cichlasoma" urophthalmus, encompassing most of their geographical range in Middle-America (river basins in southeastern Mexico, Belize, and Guatemala together with the Yucatan Peninsula). Genetic diversity and structure analyses were done based on 167 cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 sequences (330 bp) for C. cichlasomae from 21 populations and 161 cytochrome b sequences (599 bp) for "C." urophthalmus from 26 populations. Analyses performed included phylogenetic tree estimation under Bayesian inference and maximum likelihood analysis, genetic diversity, distance and structure estimates, haplotype networks, and demographic evaluations. Crassicutis cichlasomae showed high genetic diversity values and genetic structuring, corresponding with 4 groups clearly differentiated and highly divergent. Conversely, "C." urophthalmus showed low levels of genetic diversity and genetic differentiation, defined as 2 groups with low divergence and with no correspondence with geographical distribution. Our results show that species of cichlids parasitized by C. cichlasomae other than "C." urophthalmus, along with multiple colonization events and subsequent isolation in different basins, are likely factors that shaped the genetic structure of the parasite. Meanwhile, historical long-distance dispersal and drought periods during the Holocene, with significant population size reductions and fragmentations, are factors that could have shaped the genetic structure of the Mayan cichlid.
In this paper we present several eight-frame algorithms for their use in phase shifting profilometry and their application for the analysis of semi-fossilized materials. All algorithms are obtained from a set of two-frame algorithms and designed to compensate common errors such as phase shift detuning and bias errors.
The low dispersal capacity of sand flies could lead to population isolation due to geographic barriers, climate variation, or to population fragmentation associated with specific local habitats due to landscape modification. The phlebotomine sand fly Lutzomyia cruciata has a wide distribution throughout Mexico and is a vector of Leishmania mexicana in the southeast. The aim of this study was to evaluate the genetic diversity, structure, and divergence within and among populations of Lu. cruciata in the state of Chiapas, and to infer the intra-specific phylogeny using the 3 end of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. We analyzed 62 sequences from four Lu. cruciata populations and found 26 haplotypes, high genetic differentiation and restricted gene flow among populations (Fst=0.416, Nm=0.701, p<0.001). The highest diversity values were recorded in populations from Loma Bonita and Guadalupe Miramar. Three lineages (100% bootstrap and 7% overall divergence) were identified using a maximum likelihood phylogenetic analysis which showed high genetic divergence (17.2-22.7%). A minimum spanning haplotype network also supported separation into three lineages. Genetic structure and divergence within and among Lu. cruciata populations are hence affected by geographic heterogeneity and evolutionary background. Data obtained in the present study suggest that Lu. cruciata in the state of Chiapas consists of at least three lineages. Such findings may have implications for vector capacity and hence for vector control strategies.
We obtained nuclear ITS-1 and mitochondrial cox1 sequences from 225 Crassicutis cichlasomae adults collected in 12 species of cichlids from 32 localities to prospect for the presence of cryptic species. This trematode is commonly found in species of cichlids over a wide geographic range in Middle-America. Population-level phylogenetic analyses of ITS-1 and cox1, assessments of genetic and haplotype diversity, and morphological observations revealed that C. cichlasomae represents a complex of seven cryptic species for which no morphological diagnostic characters have been discovered thus far. Bayesian and Maximum Likelihood analyses of concatenated datasets (906 bp) recovered eight lineages of C. cichlasomae, all with high posterior probabilities and bootstrap branch support. Values of genetic divergence between clades ranged from 1.0% to 5.2% for ITS-1, and from 7.2% to 30.0% for cox1. Morphological study of more than 300 individuals did not reveal structural diagnostic traits for the species defined using molecular evidence. These observations indicate that some traditional morphological characters (e.g., testes position) have substantial intra-specific variation, and should be used with caution when classifying C. cichlasomae and their sister taxa. Additionally, phylogenetic analyses did not reveal a strict correlation between these cryptic species and their host species or geographic distribution, however it appears that genetic distinctiveness of these cryptic species was influenced by the diversification and biogeographical history of Middle-American cichlids.
1. Roads may affect wildlife populations through habitat loss and disturbances, as they create an abrupt linear edge, increasing the proportion of edge exposed to a different habitat. Three types of edge effects have been recognized: abiotic, direct biotic, and indirect biotic. 2. We explored the direct biotic edge effects of 3- to 4-m wide roads, and also a previously unrecognized type of edge effect: social. We live-trapped two threatened endemic rodents from Cozumel Island (Oryzomys couesi cozumelae and Reithrodontomys spectabilis) in 16 plots delimited by roads on two sides, to compare edge effects between two adjacent edges (corners), single-edge and interior forest, on life history and social variables. 3. No significant edge effects were observed on the life-history variables, with the exception of differences in body condition between males and females of O. c. cozumelae near edges. Both species showed significant and contrasting effects on their social variables. 4. O. c. cozumelae was distributed according to its age and sex: the proportion of adults and males was higher in interior than near edges, while juveniles and females were more abundant near edges. More nonreproductive females were present in corners than in single-edge and interior, while the opposite distribution was observed for nonreproductive males. 5. The distribution of R. spectabilis was related to its age and reproductive condition, but not to its sex. The proportion of adults was significantly higher in corners, while juveniles were only caught in single-edge and interior quadrants. The proportion of reproductive individuals was higher in edge than interior quadrants, while reproductive females were only present in edge quadrants. 6. We found significant differences between the quadrants with the greatest edge exposure in comparison with other quadrants. The social edge effects we identified complement the typology of edge effects recognized in ecological literature. Our study provides insight into the effects that sharp road edges have on biological and social characteristics of small mammal populations, highlighting how such effects vary among species. Our findings have important conservation implications for these threatened species, but are also applicable in a broader context wherever there are abrupt edges caused by linear landscape features.
Inferences about species boundaries and evolutionary history are often complicated by discordance between datasets. In recent times, considerable effort has been devoted to understanding the causes of discordance between the patterns of genetic variation and structure shown by different unlinked molecular markers. The genus Batrachoseps (Caudata, Plethodontidae), the most diverse group of salamanders in western North America, is characterized by limited morphological variation and discordance between molecular datasets, making it a challenging group for taxonomists but also a good model to test newly developed analytical methods to sort out possible sources of discordance. In this study, we present a comprehensive assessment of the evolutionary history of B. major, one of the most widespread species in the genus, based on extensive sampling and phylogenetic and coalescent analyses of data from mitochondrial and nuclear markers. We found non-monophyly of mtDNA in B. major, with two lineages (northern and southern) that are more closely related to other species in the genus than to each other, but this division was not apparent in nuclear DNA. Despite non-monophyly in gene trees, species tree analyses recovered a sister group relationship between the two lineages of B. major, and coalescent simulations suggested that there is no need to invoke gene flow to account for the discordance across gene trees. The possibility that these two lineages represent sister, cryptic taxa, is discussed in the context of Bayesian methods of species/lineage delineation. Contrary to prior expectations, B. major has experienced extensive diversification on the Baja California Peninsula, where four endemic lineages have persisted for at least 4 million years.
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