Drosophila ananassae and its relatives have many advantages as a model of genetic differentiation and speciation. In this report, we examine evolutionary relationships in the ananassae species subgroup using a multi-locus molecular data set, karyotypes, meiotic chromosome configuration, chromosomal inversions, morphological traits, and patterns of reproductive isolation. We describe several new taxa that are the closest known relatives of D. ananassae. Analysis of Y-chromosomal and mitochondrial haplotypes, shared chromosome arrangements, pre-mating isolation and hybrid male sterility suggests that these taxa represent a recent evolutionary radiation and may experience substantial gene flow. We discuss possible evolutionary histories of these species and give a formal description of one of them as D. parapallidosa Tobari sp. n. The comparative framework established by this study, combined with the recent sequencing of the D. ananassae genome, will facilitate future studies of reproductive isolation, phenotypic variation and genome evolution in this lineage.
Spontaneous crossing over in males of Drosophila ananassae has been well demonstrated using F(1) individuals from crosses between marker stocks and wild type strains. However, the question of its occurrence in males from natural populations remained open. Here we present the cytological evidence that crossing over does occur in males of D. ananassae from two Brazilian populations, sampled nearly 21 years apart, and in two recently sampled populations, one from Indonesia and one from Okinawa, Japan. Cytological analysis of meiosis in males collected from nature and in sons of females from the same population inseminated in nature revealed the presence of chiasmata, inversion chiasmata, and isosite chromosome breakages in the diplotene cells in all sampled populations. These data demonstrate that reciprocal and nonreciprocal exchanges and chromosome breakages, previously reported as related events of male crossing over, do occur at variable frequencies among males from natural populations.
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