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DNA barcoding Neotropical fishes: recent advances from the Pampa Plain, Argentina

Authors

  • J. J. Rosso,

    Corresponding author
    1. Grupo de Biotaxonomía Morfológica y Molecular de Peces (BIMOPE), Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (IIMyC, CONICET-UNMDP), Funes 3350, Mar del Plata 7600, Argentina
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  • E. Mabragaña,

    1. Grupo de Biotaxonomía Morfológica y Molecular de Peces (BIMOPE), Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (IIMyC, CONICET-UNMDP), Funes 3350, Mar del Plata 7600, Argentina
    2. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Av. Rivadavia 1917, CABA C1033AAJ, Buenos Aires, Argentina
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  • M. González Castro,

    1. Grupo de Biotaxonomía Morfológica y Molecular de Peces (BIMOPE), Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (IIMyC, CONICET-UNMDP), Funes 3350, Mar del Plata 7600, Argentina
    2. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Av. Rivadavia 1917, CABA C1033AAJ, Buenos Aires, Argentina
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  • J. M. Díaz de Astarloa

    1. Grupo de Biotaxonomía Morfológica y Molecular de Peces (BIMOPE), Instituto de Investigaciones Marinas y Costeras (IIMyC, CONICET-UNMDP), Funes 3350, Mar del Plata 7600, Argentina
    2. Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Av. Rivadavia 1917, CABA C1033AAJ, Buenos Aires, Argentina
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Abstract

The fish fauna of the Pampa Plain, the southernmost distribution range of many Neotropical species, was barcoded in this study. COI sequences were analysed by means of distance (K2P/NJ) and character-based (ML) models, as well as the Barcode Index Number (BIN). K2P/NJ analysis was able to discriminate among all previously identified species while also revealing the likely occurrence of two cryptic species that were further supported by BIN and ML analyses. On the other hand, both BIN and ML were not able to discriminate between two species of Rineloricaria. Despite the small genetic divergence between A. cf. pampa and A. eigenmanniorum, a tight array of haplotypes was observed for each species in both the distance and character-based methods. Deep intraspecific divergences were detected in Cnesterodon decemmaculatus (5%) and Salminus brasiliensis (6%). For Salminus brasiliensis, these findings were further supported by character-based (ML) evidence and meristic and morphological data. Our results also showed that Pampa Plain representatives of Salminus brasiliensis, Rhamdia quelen, Hoplias malabaricus, Synbranchus marmoratus, Australoheros facetus, Oligosarcus jenynsii and Corydoras paleatus differed by more than 3% from their conspecifics from other parts of South America. Overall, this study was able to highlight the likely occurrence of a cryptic species in Salminus brasiliensis and also illustrate the strong geographical structure in the COI sequence composition of seven fish species from South America.

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