Molecular phylogenesis of Mediterranean Octocorals

Marchiselli, Simone (2013) Molecular phylogenesis of Mediterranean Octocorals. [Laurea magistrale], Università di Bologna, Corso di Studio in Biologia marina [LM-DM270] - Ravenna
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In order to support the conservation of the Mediterranean octocorals improvements on information regarding their taxonomic units and phylogenetic relationships are strongly needed. In the present thesis work, phylogenetic analyses based on the mitochondrial mtMSH and 16S genes were performed including 15 Mediterranean octocorals species on the 56 recognized to date. Moreover, an extended datasets with Atlanto/Pacific congeners Octocorallia species was implemented to clarify their phylogenetic relationships and estimate the divergence times of the Mediterranean species. Results indicated that: 1) there are similarity and differences among molecular and morphological traits depending on the taxonomical level considered; 2) the molecular phylogeny of the Mediterranean octocorals retrace the previous relationships based on wide octocorals analyses; and 3) the divergence time among Mediterranean and Atlanto/Pacific species varies depending on analysed taxa. At higher taxonomic level, the Mediterranean trees supported the division of the Mediterranean Octocorallia into one major clade (Alcyoniina-Holaxonia) plus two unresolved branch including the single species available of Scleraxonia and Stolonifera respectively. This topology was better supported including the Atlanto/Pacific congeners species. The molecular evidence suggested that Alcyonium palmatum and Corallium rubrum species are the youngest with a divergence time estimated around 4 MYA. Particularly, C. rubrum results were in agreement with the hypothesis that recent orogenesis process of the Mediterranean Sea promoted the allopatric speciation of this specie. Increasing the sample design and implementing the emerging next-generation genomic-sequencing technologies, further studies would be able to improve the understanding of the Mediterranean octocorals phylogenetic relationships and evolution.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di laurea (Laurea magistrale)
Autore della tesi
Marchiselli, Simone
Relatore della tesi
Correlatore della tesi
Corso di studio
Ordinamento Cds
Parole chiave
Mediterranean Octocorals, Phylogeny, Divergence time
Data di discussione della Tesi
21 Febbraio 2013

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