Haplotype diversity in medically important red scorpion (Scorpiones: Buthidae: Hottentotta tamulus) from India
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The medically important Indian red scorpion, Hottentotta tamulus, is one of the most poisonous scorpions of Indian subcontinent. We studied the haplotype diversity in eight populations of H. tamulus based on mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) partial gene sequence. Analyses revealed 22 haplotypes with a haplotype diversity of 0.941 and nucleotide diversity of 0.023. For the first two codon positions both transition and transversion types of substitutions were equally likely and the test for neutrality was not rejected. However, codon substitution pattern indicated that the gene has experienced purifying selection. Model-based clustering method indicated that the eight populations form three groups that correspond to high, moderate and low rainfall areas, indicating that there is biogeographical separation of haplotypes. Populations from three groups formed distinct clades in maximum likelihood analysis and median joining genetic network and were statistically supported by low within group and high among group variation in analyses of molecular variance. We provide the first account of haplotype diversity in Indian red scorpions and their biogeographical separation.
Keywordsphylogenetics biogeography cytochrome oxidase subunit I median joining network analyses of molecular variance
VS and ND are thankful to the Director and the Chair, Biological Sciences, for providing the infrastructural facilities at Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune. We are grateful to Dr Deepak Apte, Director; Rahul Khot, incharge Natural History Collection; and Vithoba Hegde, senior field assistant, for their help during registration of specimens at Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), Mumbai. We are thankful to Dr Sanjay Molur for helping in registration of specimens in the Wildlife Information Liaison Development (WILD), Coimbatore. We are thankful to Dr Anand Padhye and Shauri Sulakhe for helping in registration of specimens in the museum collection of Institute of Natural History Education and Research (INHER), Pune. We are thankful to Pradeep Kumkar, Durgesh Pangarkar, Somnath Kumbhar, Ishaan Pahade, Chaitanya Risbud, Adarsh Kaul and Shruti Paripatyadar for their help in field work. This work was partially supported by Department of Science and Technology, DST-INSPIRE Research Grant (IFA12-LSBM-21) to ND. We are thankful to an anonymous reviewer for critical comments on earlier draft of the manuscript.
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