Ichthyological Research

, Volume 57, Issue 3, pp 215–222 | Cite as

Genetic constitution and phylogenetic relationships of Japanese crucian carps (Carassius)

  • Gunji Yamamoto
  • Mikumi Takada
  • Kei’ichiro Iguchi
  • Mutsumi NishidaEmail author
Full Paper


The genetic constitution and phylogenetic relationships among the proposed species and subspecies of the crucian carp complex in Japan (Carassius cuvieri, C. auratus subspp. 1 and 2, C. a. grandoculis, C. a. buergeri, and C. a. langsdorfii) were investigated based on analyses of the partial nucleotide sequences of the mitochondrial DNA control region and amplified fragment length polymorphisms of nuclear DNA. Our results demonstrate that C. cuvieri and C. auratus are different entities. However, although several distinct lineages were observed for C. auratus, none corresponded to the proposed subspecies. Moreover, the five subspecies of C. auratus were not necessarily separated genetically from each other. Triploid fish, which are currently classified as a single subspecies (C. a. langsdorfii) but are sometimes treated as an independent species, fell into various clades along with diploid individuals of other subspecies that have the same or similar mitochondrial haplotypes. This suggests that gynogenetic triploid crucian carps distributed throughout the Japanese Archipelago have polyphyletic maternal origins. Our results indicate that Japanese crucian carps are a much more complex assemblage than previously believed.


Carassius auratus Mitochondrial DNA Nuclear DNA AFLP Triploid 



We thank K. Watanabe and S. Ishikawa for their kind suggestions. We are grateful to K. Nakayama, Y. Fujioka, H. Hakoyama, K. Katsura, N. Watanabe, S. Ito, N. Mastubara, Y. Niimura, Y. Yamashina, R. Yoshida, and M. Noguchi for their help in obtaining specimens, and T. Ohkawa for his assistance with the phylogenetic analysis during the initial phase of this study. We also thank the editor and two reviewers for their valuable comments about earlier versions of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© The Ichthyological Society of Japan 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gunji Yamamoto
    • 1
  • Mikumi Takada
    • 1
  • Kei’ichiro Iguchi
    • 2
  • Mutsumi Nishida
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Marine Bioscience, Ocean Research InstituteThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan
  2. 2.National Research Institute of Fisheries ScienceNaganoJapan

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