Disparate rates of molecular evolution in cospeciating hosts and parasites

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:1994
Authors:M. S. Hafner, Sudman, P. D., Villablanca, F. X., Spradling, T. A., Demastes, J. W., Nadler, S. A.
Pagination:1087 - 1090
Date Published:1994
Keywords:base, differentiation, genetic, genome, geomydoecus, Geomyidae, gopher, Mallophaga, mitochondrial dna, Phylogeny, pocket, rodentia, substitutions, trees, trichodectidae

DNA sequences for the gene encoding mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I in a group of rodents (pocket gophers) and their ectoparasites provide evidence for cospeciation and reveal different rates of molecular evolution in the hosts and their parasites. The overall rate of nucleotide substitution (both silent and replacement changes) is approximately three times higher in lice, and the rate of synonymous substitution (based on analysis of fourfold degenerate sites) is approximately an order of magnitude greater in lice. The difference in synonymous substitution rate between lice and gophers correlates with a difference in similar magnitude in generation times.

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