Molecules and Cells

, Volume 27, Issue 5, pp 515–523 | Cite as

Monophyly of the family Desmoscolecidae (Nematoda, Demoscolecida) and Its Phylogenetic position inferred from 18S rDNA sequences

  • Ui Wook Hwang
  • Eun Hwa Choi
  • Dong Sung Kim
  • Wilfrida Decraemer
  • Cheon Young Chang


To infer the monophyletic origin and phylogenetic relationships of the order Desmoscolecida, a unique and puzzling group of mainly free-living marine nematodes, we newly determined nearly complete 18S rDNA sequences for six marine desmoscolecid nematodes belonging to four genera (Desmoscolex, Greeffiella, Tricoma and Paratricoma). Based on the present data and those of 72 nematode species previously reported, the first molecular phylogenetic analysis focusing on Desmoscolecida was done by using neighbor joining (NJ), maximum parsimony (MP), maximum likelihood (ML) and Bayesian inference (BI) methods. All four resultant trees consistently and strongly supported that the family Desmoscolecidae forms a monophyletic group with very high node confidence values. The monophyletic clade of desmocolecid nematodes was placed as a sister group of the clade including some members of Monhysterida and Araeolaimida, Cyartonema elegans (Cyartonematidae) and Terschellingia longicaudata (Linhomoeidae) in all the analyses. However, the present phylogenetic trees do not show any direct attraction between the families Desmoscolecidae and Cyartonematidae. Within the monophyletic clade of the family Desmoscolecidae in all of the present phylogenetic trees, there were consistently observed two distinct sub-groups which correspond to the subfamilies Desmoscolecinae [Greeffiella sp. + Desmoscolex sp.] and Tricominae [Paratricoma sp. + Tricoma sp].


18S rDNA Desmoscolecidae molecular phylogeny Nematoda 


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Copyright information

© The Korean Society for Molecular and Cellular Biology and Springer Netherlands 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ui Wook Hwang
    • 1
  • Eun Hwa Choi
    • 1
  • Dong Sung Kim
    • 2
  • Wilfrida Decraemer
    • 3
    • 4
  • Cheon Young Chang
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Biology, Teachers College and Department of Biology, Graduate SchoolKyungpook National UniversityDaeguKorea
  2. 2.Marine Resources Research DepartmentKorea Ocean Research and Development InstituteAnsanKorea
  3. 3.Department of InvertebratesRoyal Belgian Institute of Natural SciencesBrusselsBelgium
  4. 4.Department of BiologyGhent UniversityGhentBelgium
  5. 5.Department of Biological Science, College of Natural SciencesDaegu UniversityGyeongsanKorea

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