, Volume 130, Issue 2, pp 151-161

Evolutionary relationships of deep-sea hydrothermal vent and cold-water seep clams (Bivalvia: Vesicomyidae): results from the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I

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Phylogenetic relationships among vesicomyid clams (Bivalvia: Vesicomyidae) and their placement within the order Heterodonta were examined using mitochondrial encoded cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) DNA sequences. The presently analyzed vesicomyids represent a recent monophyletic radiation that probably occurred within the Cenozoic. Nucleotide phylogenetic analyses resolved discrete clades that were consistent with currently recognized species: Calyptogena magnifica, C. ponderosa, Ectenagena extenta, C. phaseoliformis, Vesicomya cordata, Calyptogena n. sp. (Gulf of Mexico), C. kaikoi, C. nautilei, C. solidissima and C. soyoae (Type-A). However, specimens variously identified as: V. gigas, C. kilmeri, C. pacifica, and V. lepta comprised two “species complexes”, each composed of multiple evolutionary lineages. Most taxa are limited to hydrothermal-vent or cold-seep habitats, but the “vent” versus “seep” clams do not constitute separate monophyletic groups. Current applications of the generic names Calyptogena, Ectenagena, and Vesicomya are not consistent with phylogenetic inferences.

Received: 24 July 1997 / Accepted: 22 August 1997