Molecular Approaches to Identify Cryptic Species and Polymorphic Species within a Complex Community of Fig WaspsReport as inadecuate




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Cryptic and polymorphic species can complicate traditional taxonomic research and both of these concerns are common in fig wasp communities. Species identification is very difficult, despite great effort and the ecological importance of fig wasps. Herein, we try to identify all chalcidoid wasp species hosted by one species of fig, using both morphological and molecular methods. We compare the efficiency of four different DNA regions and find that ITS2 is highly effective for species identification, while mitochondrial COI and Cytb regions appear less reliable, possibly due to the interference signals from either nuclear copies of mtDNA, i.e. NUMTs, or the effects of Wolbachia infections. The analyses suggest that combining multiple markers is the best choice for inferring species identifications as any one marker may be unsuitable in a given case.



Author: Jin-Hua Xiao, Ning-Xin Wang, Yan-Wei Li, Robert W. Murphy, Dong-Guang Wan, Li-Ming Niu, Hao-Yuan Hu, Yue-Guan Fu, Da-Wei Huang

Source: http://plos.srce.hr/



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