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A Composite Molecular Phylogeny of Living Lemuroid Primates

DelPero M.a · Pozzi L.a · Masters J.C.b, c
aDipartimento di Biologia Animale e dell’Uomo, Università di Torino, Torino, Italia; bNatal Museum, Pietermaritzburg, and cSchool of Biological and Conservation Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa Folia Primatol 2006;77:434–445 (DOI:10.1159/000095390)

Abstract

Lemuroid phylogeny is a source of lively debate among primatologists. Reconstructions based on morphological, physiological, behavioural and molecular data have yielded a diverse array of tree topologies with few nodes in common. In the last decade, molecular phylogenetic studies have grown in popularity, and a wide range of sequences has been brought to bear on the problem, but consensus has remained elusive. We present an analysis based on a composite molecular data set of approx. 6,400 bp assembled from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) database, including both mitochondrial and nuclear genes, and diverse analytical methods. Our analysis consolidates some of the nodes that were insecure in previous reconstructions, but is still equivocal on the placement of some taxa. We conducted a similar analysis of a composite data set of approx. 3,600 bp to investigate the controversial relationships within the family Lemuridae. Here our analysis was more successful; only the position of Eulemur coronatus remained uncertain.

 

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