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A polyphasic approach to the delimitation of diatom species: a case study for the genus Pinnularia (Bacillariophyta)

Tijdschriftbijdrage - Tijdschriftartikel

Diatoms are one of the most abundant and arguably the most species-rich group of protists. Diatom species delimitation has often been based exclusively on the recognition of morphological discontinuities without investigation of other lines of evidence. Even though DNA sequences and reproductive experiments have revealed several examples of (pseudo)cryptic diversity, our understanding of diatom species boundaries and diversity remains limited. The cosmopolitan pennate raphid diatom genus Pinnularia represents one of the most taxon-rich diatom genera. In this study, we focused on the delimitation of species in one of the major clades of the genus, the Pinnularia subgibba group, based on 105 strains from a worldwide origin. We compared genetic distances between the sequences of seven molecular markers and selected the most variable pair, the mitochondrial cox1 and nuclear encoded LSU rDNA, to formulate a primary hypothesis on the species limits using three single-locus automated species delimitation methods. We compared the DNA-based primary hypotheses with morphology and with other available lines of evidence. The results indicate that our data set comprised 15 species of the P. subgibba group. The vast majority of these taxa have an uncertain taxonomic identity, suggesting that several may be unknown to science and/or members of (pseudo)cryptic species complexes within the P. subgibba group.
Tijdschrift: Journal of Phycology
ISSN: 0022-3646
Issue: 2
Volume: 55
Pagina's: 365-379
Aantal pagina's: 15
Jaar van publicatie:2019
Trefwoorden:cox1, diatoms, LSU rDNA, molecular taxonomy, Pinnularia subgibba, psbA, rbcL, species diversity, SSU rDNA