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Keywords:

  • new world monkeys;
  • platyrrhini;
  • phylogeny;
  • speciation;
  • chromosomes;
  • Y-autosome translocation

Abstract

A comparison of the G-banded karyotypes of two red howler subspecies, Alouatta seniculus arctoidea and A. s. sara, showed that they differed by at least 14 chromosomal rearrangements. Genomic reshuffling is so great that homologs between subspecies could not be found for some chromosome, while the assignment of homology for other chromosomes remains uncertain. The two red howlers, however, share an unusual X1X2Y1Y2/ X1X1X2X2 sex-chromosome system that resulted from a Y-autosome translocation, probably in a common ancestor. The great chromosomal variability resulting from rapid chromosomal evolution in howlers indicates that cytogenetic data could make an important contribution to resolving phylogenetic and conservation problems in this group of highly conspicuous New World Monkeys. © 1995 Wiley-Liss, Inc.