, Volume 85, Issue 2, pp 163-179

Genome evolution in pocket gophers (genus Thomomys)

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Abstract

Cellular DNA content (2 C-value) was measured by fluorescence flow cytometry of chromomycin-A3 stained spleen cells in 2 subgenera, 5 species, and 21 subspecies of pocket gophers (genus Thomomys). The data indicate that, in Thomomys: (1) interspecific variation is extensive but, while some congeneric species differ by as much as 230%, others are identical in C-value; (2) intraspecific differentiation can be extensive with C-values differing by as much as 35%; and (3) populations of the same subspecies with apparently similar karyotypes can differ significantly in C-value. The implications of these results for hypotheses of the “adaptive” significance of C-value variation and genome evolution are discussed.