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Genetica. 2008 Mar;132(3):255-66. Epub 2007 Jul 31.

Molecular phylogeny and karyotype differentiation in Paratelmatobius and Scythrophrys (Anura, Leptodactylidae).

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Departamento de Biologia Celular, Instituto de Biologia, Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP), CP 6109, Campinas , SP 13083-863, Brasil.


Paratelmatobius and Scythrophrys are leptodactylid frogs endemic to the Brazilian Atlantic forest and their close phylogenetic relationship was recently inferred in an analysis that included Paratelmatobius sp. and S. sawayae. To investigate the interspecific relationships among Paratelmatobius and Scythrophrys species, we analyzed a mitochondrial region (approximately 2.4 kb) that included the ribosomal genes 12S and 16S and the tRNAval in representatives of all known localities of these genera and in 54 other species. Maximum parsimony inferences were done using PAUP* and support for the clades was evaluated by bootstrapping. A cytogenetic analysis using Giemsa staining, C-banding and silver staining was also done for those populations of Paratelmatobius not included in previous cytogenetic studies of this genus in order to assess their karyotype differentiation. Our results suggested Paratelmatobius and Scythrophrys formed a clade strongly supported by bootstrapping, which corroborated their very close phylogenetic relationship. Among the Paratelmatobius species, two clades were identified and corroborated the groups P. mantiqueira and P. cardosoi previously proposed based on morphological characters. The karyotypes of Paratelmatobius sp. 2 and Paratelmatobius sp. 3 described here had diploid chromosome number 2n = 24 and showed many similarities with karyotypes of other Paratelmatobius representatives. The cytogenetic data and the phylogenetic analysis allowed the proposal/corroboration of several hypotheses for the karyotype differentiation within Paratelmatobius and Scythrophrys. Namely the telocentric pair No. 4 represented a synapomorphy of P. cardosoi and Paratelmatobius sp. 2, while chromosome pair No. 5 with interstitial C-bands could be interpreted as a synapomorphy of the P. cardosoi group. The NOR-bearing chromosome No. 10 in the karyotype of P. poecilogaster was considered homeologous to chromosome No. 10 in the karyotype of Scythrophrys sp., chromosome No. 9 in the karyotype of Paratelmatobius sp. 1, chromosome No. 8 in the karyotypes of Paratelmatobius sp. 2 and of Paratelmatobius sp. 3, and chromosome No. 7 in the karyotype of P. cardosoi. A hypothesis for the evolutionary divergence of these NOR-bearing chromosomes, which probably involved events like gain in heteochromatin, was proposed.

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