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The molecular phylogeny of the Sparidae (Pisces, Perciformes) based on two satellite DNA families


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In this study, the phylogenetic relationships and which the taxonomic status of the species belonging to the Sparidae family (Pisces: Perciformes) are analysed and revised. This study includes species of this family that are distributed by the North-eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts, is based on the analysis of two satellite DNA families. While one satellite DNA, the centromeric EcoRI family, extends to all the species analysed, the other, the subtelomeric DraI family, is restricted to only six of the 16 species studied. Based on phylogenetic use of these two markers, we conclude that the Sparidae family is composed by two major lineages: one comprising the species of the genera Sparus, Diplodus, Lithognathus, Boops, Sarpa and Spondyliosoma, and one species of Pagellus (P. bogaraveo); and the other lineage is comprised of the species of Pagrus and Dentex, and one species of Pagellus (P. erythrinus). This classification is consistent across the two markers used and clearly contradicts previous morphological phylogenies based mainly on dentition. In addition, the current status and the phylogenetic position of some of the species analysed (i.e. species of Pagrus, Dentex and Pagellus) are not supported by our analyses. Finally, we discuss the value of the morphological characters used until now for the classification of this group of fish.