Skip to main content


Log in

Chromosomal diversification of reef fishes from genus Centropyge(Perciformes, Pomacanthidae)

  • Published:
Genetica Aims and scope Submit manuscript


The genus Centropyge is remarkable for species richness, composing a highly specialized fish group amongst members from family Pomacanthidae. However, cytogenetical reports are nearly absent in these animals. New data are provided from karyotypical studies carried out on Centropyge aurantonotus from the Brazilian coast of the Atlantic Ocean and C. ferrugatus from the Philippines Sea of the Indo-Pacific Ocean. Both species present 2n=48 but karyotypes are differentiated by fundamental number. C. aurantonotus has a great number of biarmed chromosomes (4 m + 14 sm+16 st+4 a), while C. ferrugatus presents only acrocentric chromosomes. Single nucleolar organizer regions (NORs) are located at interstitial position of an acrocentric pair in C. ferrugatus and on short arms of a subtelocentric pair in C. aurantonotus, as confirmed by fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) with 18S rDNA probes. Heterochromatin is distributed over NOR and centromeric regions in both species, but additional GC-rich heterochromatic blocks on short arms of up to eight chromosomal pairs can be detected in C. aurantonotus. 5S rDNA segments were located interstitially on two chromosomal pairs in C. ferrugatus and on nine pairs in C. aurantonotus, mostly equivalent to heterochromatic blocks on short arms of biarmed chromosomes. C. ferrugatus can be considered a species in which basal chromosomal features proposed for modern Teleosteans were conserved. The derived karyotype pattern of C. aurantonotus seems to be determined by pericentric inversions and heterochromatin addition which probably determined the notorious dispersion of 5S rRNA (pseudo)genes. It is demonstrated that, even within a group generally characterized by cytogenetical homogeneity as the family Pomacanthidae, diversified karyotypes can be found.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in via an institution to check access.

Access this article

Subscribe and save

Springer+ Basic
EUR 32.99 /Month
  • Get 10 units per month
  • Download Article/Chapter or Ebook
  • 1 Unit = 1 Article or 1 Chapter
  • Cancel anytime
Subscribe now

Buy Now

Price excludes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.

Instant access to the full article PDF.

Similar content being viewed by others


  • P.R.A.M. Affonso W. Guedes E. Pauls P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (2001) ArticleTitleCytogenetic analysis of coral reef fishes from Brazil (families Pomacanthidae and Chaetodontidae) Cytologia 66 379–384

    Google Scholar 

  • P.R.A.M. Affonso W. Guedes E. Pauls P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (2002) ArticleTitleClose karyotypical relationship between two species of marine angelfishes from South Atlantic: Pomacanthus arcuatus and P. paru (Perciformes, Pomacanthidae) Caryologia 55 323–329

    Google Scholar 

  • R. Arai M. Inoue (1975) ArticleTitleChromosomes of nine species of Chaetodontidae and one species of Scorpidae from Japan Bull. Natl. Sci. Museum Tokyo, Ser. A (Zoology) 1 217–224

    Google Scholar 

  • J.A. Bauer S.E. Bauer (1981) ArticleTitleReproductive biology of pigmy angelfishes of the genus Centropyge (Pomacanthidae) Bull. Mar. Sci. 31 IssueID3 495–513

    Google Scholar 

  • K.C. Chung N.Y.S. Woo (1998) ArticleTitlePhylogenetic relationships of the Pomacanthidae (Pisces: Teleostei) inferred from allozyme variation J. Zool. 246 215–231

    Google Scholar 

  • M. Deiana A. A. Cau S. Salvadori E. Coluccia R. Camas A. Milia J. Tagliavini (2000) ArticleTitleMajor and 5S ribosomal sequences of the largemouth bass Micropterus salmoides (Perciformes, Centrarchidae) are localized in GC-rich regions of the genome Chrom. Res. 8 213–218 Occurrence Handle10841048

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • F. Foresti C. Oliveira L.F. Almeida-Toledo (1993) ArticleTitleA method for chromosome preparations from large specimens of fish using in vitro short treatment with colchicine Experientia 49 810–813 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DyaK2cXjslCg

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • P.M. Galetti SuffixJr C.T. Aguilar W. Molina (2000) ArticleTitleAn overview of marine fish cytogenetics Hydrobiologia 420 55–62

    Google Scholar 

  • C.O. Goodbred J.E. Graves (1996) ArticleTitleGenetic relationships among geographically isolated populations of bluefish (Pomatomus saltatrix) Mar. Freshwater Res. 47 347–355 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DyaK28Xls1Kgsro%3D

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • W.M. Howell D.A. Black (1980) ArticleTitleControlled silver staining of nucleolus organizer region with protective colloidal developer: a 1-step method Experientia 36 1014–1015 Occurrence Handle1:STN:280:DyaL3M%2Fms12kug%3D%3D Occurrence Handle6160049

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • R. Hunziker (1992) ArticleTitleThe littlest angels Tropical Fish Hobbyist 41 80–92

    Google Scholar 

  • G.D. Johnson A.C. Gill (1995) Perches and their allies J.R. Paxton W.N. Eschemeyer (Eds) Encyclopedia of Fishes Academic Press Inc. San Diego 181–196

    Google Scholar 

  • R. Leah S. Frederiksen J. Engberg P.D. Sorensen (1990) ArticleTitleNucleotide sequence of a mouse 5S rRNA variant gene Nucl. Acids Res. 18 7441–7441 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DyaK3MXhsFyhtL4%3D Occurrence Handle2259634

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • A. Levan K. Fredga A.A. Sandberg (1964) ArticleTitleNomenclature for centromeric position on chromosomes Hereditas 52 201–220 Occurrence Handle10.1111/j.1601-5223.1964.tb01953.x

    Article  Google Scholar 

  • V.P. Margarido P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (2000) ArticleTitleAmplification of a GC-rich heterochromatin in the freshwater fish Leporinus desmotes (Characiformes, Anostomidae) Geneti. Mol. Biol. 23 IssueID3 569–573 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DC%2BD3MXktFSnug%3D%3D

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  • C. Martins P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (1999) ArticleTitleChromosomal localization of 5S rDNA genes in Leporinus fish (Anostomidae, Characiformes) Chrom. Res. 7 363–367 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DyaK1MXlvFyktbk%3D Occurrence Handle10515211

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • C. Martins P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (2001) ArticleTitleTwo 5S rDNA arrays in Neotropical fish species: is it a general rule for fishes? Genetica 111 439–446 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DC%2BD38XhsVKqtbY%3D Occurrence Handle11841188

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • C. Martins A.P. Wasko C. Oliveira F. Porto-Foresti P.P. Parise-Maltempi J.M. Wright F. Foresti (2002) ArticleTitleDynamics of 5S rDNA in the tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) genome: repeat units, inverted sequences, pseudogenes and chromosome loci Cytogenet. Genome Res. 98 78–85 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DC%2BD3sXitVygtrY%3D Occurrence Handle12584446

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • W.F. Molina P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (2002) ArticleTitleRobertsonian rearrangements in the reef fish Chromis (Perciformes, Pomacentridae) involving chromosomes bearing 5S rRNA genes Genet. Mol. Biol. 24 IssueID4 373–377

    Google Scholar 

  • W.F. Molina F.A. Maia-Lima P.R.A.M. Affonso (2002) ArticleTitleDivergence between karyotypical pattern and speciation events in Serranidae fish (Perciformes) Caryologia 55 IssueID4 299–305

    Google Scholar 

  • D. Pinkel T. Straume J.W. Gray (1986) ArticleTitleCytogenetic analysis using quantitative, high-sensitivity, fluorescence hybridization Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 83 2934–2938 Occurrence Handle1:CAS:528:DyaL28XktlynsbY%3D Occurrence Handle3458254

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • R.L. Pyle (1990) ArticleTitle Centropyge debelius, a new species of angelfish (Teleostei: Pomacanthidae) from Mauritius and Reunion Rev. Fr. Aquariol 17 53–56

    Google Scholar 

  • R.L. Pyle J.E. Randall (1993) ArticleTitleA new species of Centropyge from Cook Islands, with a redescription of Centropyge boylei Rev. Fr. Aquariol 19 115–124

    Google Scholar 

  • D. Schweizer (1976) ArticleTitleReverse fluorescent chromosome banding with chromomycin and DAPI Chromosoma 92 143–148

    Google Scholar 

  • D. Schweizer J. Loidl B. Hamilton (1987) Heterochromatin and the phenomenon of chromosome banding W. Hennig (Eds) Results and Problems in Cell Differentiation 14: Structure and Function of Eukaryotic Chromosomes. Springer-Verlag Berlin

    Google Scholar 

  • L. Sola A.R. Rossi F. Annesi E. Gornung (2003) ArticleTitleCytogenetic studies in Sparus auratus (Pisces, Perciformes): molecular organization of 5S rDNA and chromosomal mapping of 5S and 45S ribosomal genes and of telomeric repeats Hereditas 139 232–236 Occurrence Handle1:STN:280:DC%2BD2c7mvFChtA%3D%3D Occurrence Handle15061807

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • I.L Souza O. Moreira-Filho P.M. Galetti SuffixJr (1996) ArticleTitleHeterochromatin differentiation in the characid fish Astyanax scapripinnis Brazilian J. Genet. 19 IssueID3 405–410

    Google Scholar 

  • A. Sumner (1972) ArticleTitleA single technique for demonstrating centromeric heterochromatin Exp. Cell Res. 75 304–306 Occurrence Handle1:STN:280:DyaE3s%2FkslGitA%3D%3D Occurrence Handle4117921

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • V.E. Vicente C.M. Jesus O. Moreira-Filho (2001) ArticleTitleChromosomal localization of 5S and 18S rRNA genes in three Parodon species (Pisces, Parodontidae) Caryologia 54 IssueID4 365–359

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Pedro Manoel Galetti Jr.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Affonso, P.R.A.d.M., Galetti, P.M. Chromosomal diversification of reef fishes from genus Centropyge(Perciformes, Pomacanthidae). Genetica 123, 227–233 (2005).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Accepted:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI: