Evolução cromossômica em peixes da família Erythrinidae (Characiformes). Citogenética comparativa entre espécies do gênero Hoplias
Oliveira, Ezequiel Aguiar de
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The Erythrinidae family is a small group of Neotropical Characiformes, comprising only three genera, Hoplias, Hoplerythrinus and Erythrinus. Hoplias malabaricus, Hoplerythrinus unitaeniatus and Erythrinus erythrinus must correspond to groups of species, considering the extensive chromosomal diversity that they present, including different sex chromosomes systems. Therefore, these fishes offer excellent opportunities for evolutionary investigations, given the different chromosomal characteristics between their representatives. Recent studies allowed the taxonomic characterization of six poorly or not studied Hoplias species (H. aimara, H. lacerdae, H. intermedius, H. brasiliensis, H. australis and H. curupira), present in several South American river basins’ and popularly known as “trairões” due to their large size. This study aimed to characterize the chromosomal evolution occurred in this particular group of species, in the light of its recent review and taxonomic identifications. For this purpose, in addition to classical chromosomal analysis, cytogenetic mapping of repetitive DNA sequences using specific probes was used for fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). The results showed the sharing of a great homogeneity in the species´ karyotype macrostructure, with 2n = 50 and karyotypes composed only by meta- and submetacentric chromosomes without the presence of differentiated sex chromosomes between the sexes. In turn, the karyotype microstructure, as revealed by the analysis of components of the repetitive fraction of the genome showed interspecies differentiation, thus confirming the recent taxonomic revision of these species based on their morphological characteristics. This evolutionary scenario, highlighting the conservation of chromosomal macro-structure, sharply contrasts with the scenario found in the representatives of H. malabaricus group, where a conspicuous chromosomal variation can be observed between different populations of this "nominal species." Environmental aspects related to the way of life, as well as intrinsic chromosomal features, may influence the coexistence of these contrasting models of chromosomal evolution among congeneric species of Hoplias.