Marine Biology

, Volume 151, Issue 2, pp 529–535 | Cite as

The systematic position of some boring sponges (Demospongiae, Hadromerida) studied by molecular analysis

  • Marco Barucca
  • Francesca Azzini
  • Giorgio Bavestrello
  • Maria Assunta Biscotti
  • Barbara Calcinai
  • Adriana Canapa
  • Carlo Cerrano
  • Ettore Olmo
Research Article


A phylogenetic analysis of some bioeroding sponges of the family Clionaidae (Order Hadromerida) was performed to resolve some taxonomic problems both at the specific and the supraspecific level using the D2 and D3 regions of 28S rDNA. Species belonging to the genera Cliona, Cliothosa, Spheciospongia (fam. Clionaidae) and Diplastrella (fam. Spirastrellidae) from the Mediterranean Sea and Celebes Sea (Indonesia) were analysed. In the phylogenetic tree, the species clustered on two main branches, one comprising Cliona celata, C. rhodensis, C. utricularis, and Cliothosa hancocki, and the other made up of C. viridis, C. nigricans, C. schmidti, C. jullieni, Spheciospongia solida and S. vagabunda. Above the species level, data do not support the separation of the genus Cliothosa from Cliona, while they do support the inclusion of some massive boring species, previously assigned to the genus Spirastrella, in the family Clionaidae. At the species level, data demonstrated the genetic identity of taxa C. viridis and C. nigricans, in spite of their considerable morphological differences. In contrast, the yellow species commonly attributed to C. celata are probably to be considered as a complex of sibling species with a number of distinct taxa present in the Mediterranean. Data also showed the identity of the Mediterranean and Pacific populations of C. schmidti, suggesting the status of a Tethyan relict for this species.


Sponge Neighbour Join Allozyme Electrophoresis Boring Sponge Gamma Distribution Shape Parameter 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marco Barucca
    • 1
  • Francesca Azzini
    • 2
  • Giorgio Bavestrello
    • 3
  • Maria Assunta Biscotti
    • 1
  • Barbara Calcinai
    • 3
  • Adriana Canapa
    • 1
  • Carlo Cerrano
    • 4
  • Ettore Olmo
    • 1
  1. 1.Istituto di Biologia e GeneticaUniversità Politecnica delle MarcheAnconaItaly
  2. 2.Departamento ExpedicionesPharma MarColmenar Viejo, MadridSpain
  3. 3.Dipartimento di Scienze del MareUniversità Politecnica delle MarcheAnconaItaly
  4. 4.Dipartimento per lo studio del Territorio e delle sue RisorseUniversità di GenovaGenoaItaly

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