MtDNA markers reveal the existence of allopatric evolutionary lineages in the threatened lampreys Lampetra fluviatilis L and Lampetra planeri Bloch in the Iberian glacial refugium

Coimbra, Joao Carlos; Pinto, Iraja Damiani; Wurdig, Norma Luiza; Do Carmo, Dermeval Aparecido

Conservation Genetics 12(4): 1061-1074

2011


ISSN/ISBN: 1566-0621
DOI: 10.1007/s10592-011-0209-x
Accession: 036081518

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Abstract
The Iberian Peninsula has been identified as an important glacial refugium during the Pliocene and Pleistocene epochs for the genus Lampetra, providing intermittent refuge and postglacial opportunities for colonization and expansion. We used mitochondrial DNA markers to investigate the processes that have shaped present-day genetic constitution of the genus Lampetra within the Iberian Peninsula. We surveyed 1,173 bp of the cytochrome b gene and 829 bp of the genes ATPase subunits 6 and 8 in 233 individuals of Lampetra fluviatilis (L.) and Lampetra planeri (Bloch) from 21 localities along their distribution range in the Iberian Peninsula. We identified four highly divergent allopatric evolutionary lineages that evolved by fragmentation during the Pliocene and Pleistocene likely driven by environmental factors, namely regional geomorphic events. The high level of genetic divergence between the four lineages suggests that sufficient time has apparently passed by to originate a complex of incipient or cryptic resident species and allows the definition of four evolutionary significant units (ESUs) for L. planeri and one ESU for L. fluviatilis. These findings have important consequences for the interpretation of refugia biological diversity and have major implications on the conservation of these threatened species.

MtDNA markers reveal the existence of allopatric evolutionary lineages in the threatened lampreys Lampetra fluviatilis L and Lampetra planeri Bloch in the Iberian glacial refugium