Journal of Molecular Evolution

, Volume 44 , Issue 6 , pp 660 –674

Evolutionary Shifts in Three Major Structural Features of the Mitochondrial Genome Among Iguanian Lizards

  • J. Robert  Macey
  • Allan  Larson
  • Natalia B.  Ananjeva
  • Theodore J.  Papenfuss

DOI: 10.1007/PL00006190

Cite this article as:
Macey, J., Larson, A., Ananjeva, N. et al. J Mol Evol (1997) 44: 660. doi:10.1007/PL00006190

Abstract.

A phylogenetic tree for major lineages of iguanian lizards is estimated from 1,488 aligned base positions (858 informative) of newly reported mitochondrial DNA sequences representing coding regions for eight tRNAs, ND2, and portions of ND1 and COI. Two well-supported groups are defined, the Acrodonta and the Iguanidae (sensu lato). This phylogenetic hypothesis is used to investigate evolutionary shifts in mitochondrial gene order, origin for light-strand replication, and secondary structure of tRNACys. These three characters shift together on the branch leading to acrodont lizards. Plate tectonics and the fossil record indicate that these characters changed in the Jurassic. We propose that changes to the secondary structure of tRNACys may destroy function of the origin for light-strand replication which, in turn, may facilitate shifts in gene order.

Key words: Reptilia — Sauria — Iguania — Gene organization — Cystein transfer RNA — Mitochondrial DNA — Phylogenetics 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Robert  Macey
    • 1
  • Allan  Larson
    • 1
  • Natalia B.  Ananjeva
    • 2
  • Theodore J.  Papenfuss
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Biology, Box 1137, Washington University, St. Louis, MO 63130, USAUS
  2. 2.Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, RussiaRU
  3. 3.Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, USAUS

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