Apr 13, 2020

Evolution in Sinocyclocheilus cavefish is marked by rate shifts, reversals and origin of novel traits

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
T.-R. MaoM. R. Pie


Epitomized by the well-studied Astyanax mexicanus, cavefishes provide important model organisms to understand adaptations in response to divergent natural selection. However, the spectacular Sinocyclocheilus diversification of China, the most diverse cavefish clade in the world harboring nearly 75 species, demonstrate evolutionary convergence for many traits, yet remain poorly understood in terms of their morphological evolution. Here, using a broad sample of 49 species representative of this diversification, we analyze patterns of Sinocylocheilus evolution in a phylogenetic context. We categorized species into morphs based on eye-related condition: Blind, Micro-eyed (small-eyed), and Normal-eyed and we also considered three habitat types (Troglodytic - cave-restricted; Troglophilic - cave-associated; Surface - outside of caves). Geometric morphometric analyses show Normal-eyed morphs with fusiform shapes being segregated from Blind/Micro-eyed (Eye-regressed) morphs with deeper bodies along the first principal component (PC) axis. The second PC axis accounts for shape complexity related to the presence of horns. Ancestral character reconstructions of morphs suggest at least three independent origins of Blind morphs, each with d...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Genus Cis
Nuclear Translocation
Sequence Determinations, DNA
Intracellular Translocation
Biochemical Turnover

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