Non-monophyly of fish in the Sinipercidae (Perciformes) as inferred from cytochrome b gene
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- Chen, D., Guo, X. & Nie, P. Hydrobiologia (2007) 583: 77. doi:10.1007/s10750-006-0478-4
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The sinipercids represent a group of 12 species of freshwater percoid fish, including nine in Siniperca and three species in Coreoperca. Despite several classification attempts and a preliminary molecular phylogeny, the phylogenetic relationships and systematic position of sinipercids remained still unsolved. The complete cytochrome b gene sequences from nine sinipercid species four non-sinipercid fish species were cloned, and a total of 12 cyt b sequences from 10 species of sinipercids and 11 cyt b sequences from 10 species of non-sinipercid fish also in Perciformes were included in the phylogenetic analysis. As expected, the two genera Siniperca and Coreoperca within sinipercids are recovered as monophyletic. However, nine species representing Moronidae, Serranidae, Centropomidae, Acropomatidae, Emmelichtyidae, Siganidae and Centrarchidae included in the present study are all nested between Coreoperca and Siniperca, which provides marked evidence for a non-monophyly of sinipercid fishes. Coreoperca appears to be closest to Centrachus representing the family Centrarchidae. Coreoperca whiteheadi and C. herzi are sibling species, which together are closely related to C. kawamebari. In the Siniperca, the node between S. roulei and the remaining species is the most ancestral, followed by that of S. fortis. S. chuatsi and S. kneri are sibling species, sister to S. obscura. However, the sinipercids do not seem to have a very clear phylogenetic history, for different methods of phylogenetic reconstruction result in different tree topologies, and the only conclusive result in favor of a paraphyletic origin of the two sinipercid genera is the parametric bootstrap test. The paraphyly of Sinipercidae may suggest that the “synapomorphs” such as cycloid scales, upon which this family is based, were independently derived at least twice within sinipercid fishes, and further study should be carried out to include the other two Siniperca species and to incorporate other genes.