Marine Biology

, Volume 139, Issue 4, pp 771–776 | Cite as

Genetic evolution among selected members of the genus Naso (Nasinae), "unicornfishes" from Guam

  •  C. Dayton


A species-level phylogeny of selected surgeonfishes in the genus Naso (Acanthuridae: subfamily Nasinae) was constructed using allozyme data and found to be concordant with previous inferences drawn from morphological data. Naso spp. examined from waters surrounding Guam between 1992 and 1994 were: N. caesius (Randall and Bell, 1992), N. hexacanthus (Bleeker, 1855), N. lituratus (Schneider, 1801), N. thynnoides (Valenciennes, 1835), and N. unicornis (Forskål, 1775). Acanthurus lineatus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Acanthuridae: subfamily Acanthurinae) and Zanclus cornutus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Zanclidae) were included for the purpose of outgroup comparison. Analyses of the allozyme data set generated from 16 presumptive loci using both cladistic and phenetic tree-constructing techniques identified the sibling species N. caesius and N. hexacanthus as the most genetically similar taxa among the Naso species surveyed. The pair shared the most synapomorphic alleles and the lowest degree of genetic divergence with respect to other species studied. The unweighted pair-group method using the arithmetic mean (UPGMA) and the neighbor-joining (NJ) topologies, along with two synapomorphic alleles (Aat-2 and Gpi-A), characterize N. caesius, N. hexacanthus, N. lituratus, and N. unicornis as a monophyletic group. Many allelic autapomorphies were detected in N. thynnoides, a member of the subgenus Axinurus. This supports the morphological data, which suggest that one-plated unicornfishes form a monophyletic group. The proposed partial phylogeny inferred from the allozyme data is concordant with the morphological differences (i.e. dentition, osteology, and myology) that have been used to support the partition of the genus Naso into the subgenera Axinurus and Naso.


Genetic Divergence Lower Degree Morphological Difference Monophyletic Group Morphological Data 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  •  C. Dayton
    • 1
  1. 1.University of Guam, Marine Laboratory, UOG Station, Mangilao 96923, Guam

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