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Molecular systematics of Batrachoseps (Caudata, Plethodontidae) in southern California and Baja California: Mitochondrial-nuclear DNA discordance and the evolutionary history of B. major

AutorMartínez-Solano, Íñigo ; Parra-Olea, Gabriela
Palabras claveMolecular systematics
Nuclear introns
Baja California
Batrachoseps major
Fecha de publicación2012
CitaciónMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 63(1): 131-149 (2012)
ResumenInferences 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.
Descripciónet al.
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ympev.2011.12.026
Identificadoresdoi: 10.1016/j.ympev.2011.12.026
issn: 1055-7903
e-issn: 1095-9513
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