Original paper

Genetic differentiation and species status within the snail leech Glossiphonia complanata aggregate (Hirudinea: Glossiphoniidae) revealed by RAPD analysis tab:

Verovnik, Rudi; Trontelj, Peter; Sket, Boris

Archiv für Hydrobiologie Volume 144 Number 3 (1999), p. 327 - 338

42 references

published: Mar 5, 1999

DOI: 10.1127/archiv-hydrobiol/144/1999/327

BibTeX file

ArtNo. ESP141014403006, Price: 29.00 €

Download preview PDF Buy as PDF


Randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers were employed to analyse genetic differentiation and taxonomic structure within the snail leech Glossiphonia complanata species aggregate. Three morphological types of snail leeches, whose taxonomic validity was formerly mainly distrusted, occur throughout Europe. Six individuals of each morphotype from four locations in Slovenia were investigated. At two locations all three morphotypes occurred syntopically, enabling the determination of reproductive isolation. PCR amplification with eleven decamer random primers yielded 177 reproducible marker fragments, only one of which was monomorphic in all specimens. Genetic similarity within morphotypes was substantially higher than within samples from the same locality but consisting of different morphotypes. The estimated nucleotide diversity within morphotypes (0.7-2.1 %) was lower than the nucleotide divergence between them (5.1-8.3 %). UPGMA clustering and principal coordinate analysis revealed three groups concordant with the identified morphotypes. They were tentatively assigned to the taxa Glossiphonia complanata (Linnaeus), G. concolor (Apathy) and G. nebulosa Kalbe. Reproductive isolation between them is suggested by the presence of RAPD fragments specific to each taxon, and by the absence of common fragments in syntopic populations of the three taxa. This is strong support for the hypothesis that externally very similar and anatomically nearly identical glossiphoniids belong to different biological species.


geneticmorphotypesnucleotidebiological speciestaxonomic validitySloveniaEurope