The Naked Coral'' Hypothesis Revisited - Evidence for and Against Scleractinian Monophyly

The Naked Coral'' Hypothesis Revisited - Evidence for and Against Scleractinian Monophyly

Author Kitahara, Marcelo Visentini Autor UNIFESP Google Scholar
Lin, Mei-Fang Google Scholar
Foret, Sylvain Google Scholar
Huttley, Gavin Google Scholar
Miller, David J. Google Scholar
Chen, Chaolun Allen Google Scholar
Institution Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP)
Universidade de São Paulo (USP)
James Cook Univ
Acad Sinica
Australian Natl Univ
Natl Taiwan Univ
Abstract The relationship between Scleractinia and Corallimorpharia, Orders within Anthozoa distinguished by the presence of an aragonite skeleton in the former, is controversial. Although classically considered distinct groups, some phylogenetic analyses have placed the Corallimorpharia within a larger Scleractinia/Corallimorpharia clade, leading to the suggestion that the Corallimorpharia are naked corals'' that arose via skeleton loss during the Cretaceous from a Scleractinian ancestor. Scleractinian paraphyly is, however, contradicted by a number of recent phylogenetic studies based on mt nucleotide (nt) sequence data. Whereas the naked coral'' hypothesis was based on analysis of the sequences of proteins encoded by a relatively small number of mt genomes, here a much-expanded dataset was used to reinvestigate hexacorallian phylogeny. the initial observation was that, whereas analyses based on nt data support scleractinian monophyly, those based on amino acid (aa) data support the naked coral'' hypothesis, irrespective of the method and with very strong support. To better understand the bases of these contrasting results, the effects of systematic errors were examined. Compared to other hexacorallians, the mt genomes of Robust'' corals have a higher (A+T) content, codon usage is far more constrained, and the proteins that they encode have a markedly higher phenylalanine content, leading us to suggest that mt DNA repair may be impaired in this lineage. Thus the naked coral'' topology could be caused by high levels of saturation in these mitochondrial sequences, long-branch effects or model violations. the equivocal results of these extensive analyses highlight the fundamental problems of basing coral phylogeny on mitochondrial sequence data.
Language English
Sponsor National Science Council (NSC)
Academia Sinica
Australian Research Council
Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo (FAPESP)
Grant number FAPESP: 2012/21583-1
Date 2014-04-16
Published in Plos One. San Francisco: Public Library Science, v. 9, n. 4, 13 p., 2014.
ISSN 1932-6203 (Sherpa/Romeo, impact factor)
Publisher Public Library Science
Extent 13
Access rights Open access Open Access
Type Article
Web of Science ID WOS:000336863900064

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