viernes, 3 de octubre de 2014

Ruiz C., May-Itza W. de J., Quezada-Euán J. J. G., De la Rúa P. (2013) Presence of nuclear copies of mitochondrial origin (NUMTs) in two related species of stingless bee genus Melipona (Hymenoptera: Meliponini). J. Zool. Syst. Evol. Res. 51: 107-113. DOI: 10.1111/jsz.12011 ISSN: 0947-5745


Transferred copies of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) into the nuclear genome (numts) have been reported in several Hymenoptera species, even at a high density in the honey bee nuclear genome. The accidental amplification of numts in phylogenetic studies focused on mtDNA highlights the importance of a correct determination of numts and their related mtDNA sequences. We report here the presence of numts derived from a mitochondrial rDNA 16S gene in the genome of the stingless bee species Melipona colimana and M. fasciata (tribe Meliponini) from Western Mexico. PCR products were cloned in both species obtaining thirty paralogous numts. Numts were identified by the presence of insertions and deletions and the disruption of the 16S secondary structure. Further phylogenetic analyses including alternative mitochondrial cox1 and nuclear ITS1 genes have revealed the presence of another numt (cox1) in the nuclear genome of these two species, and place both as sister lineages within the subgenus Michmelia. This is one of the first studies reporting the presence of numts in Meliponini species, and supports previous studies suggesting frequent transfer of mtDNA to the nuclear genome in Hymenoptera.

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