Mitogenomics of historical type specimens of Australasian turtles

clarification of taxonomic confusion and old mitochondrial introgression

Christian Kehlmaier, Xiuwen Zhang, Arthur Georges, Patrick D. Campbell, Scott Thomson, Uwe Fritz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)
14 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Diagnosability is central to taxonomy as are type specimens which define taxa. New advances in technologies and the discovery of new informative traits must be matched with previous taxonomic decisions based on name-bearing type specimens. Consequently, the challenge of sequencing highly degraded DNA from historical types becomes an inevitability to resolve the very many taxonomic issues arising from, by modern standards, poor historical species descriptions leading to difficulties to assign names to genetic clusters identified from fresh material. Here we apply high-throughput parallel sequencing and sequence baiting to reconstruct the mitogenomes from 18 type specimens of Australasian side-necked turtles (Chelidae). We resolve a number of important issues that have confused the taxonomy of this family, and analyse the mitogenomes of the types and those of fresh material to improve our understanding of the phylogenetic relationships of this morphologically conservative group. Together with previously published nuclear genomic data, our study provides evidence for multiple old mitochondrial introgressions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5841
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalScientific Reports
Volume9
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Apr 2019

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