MEM INST OSWALDO CRUZ, RIO DE JANEIRO, 108(3) May 2013
PAGES: 376-382 DOI: 10.1590/0074-0276108032013017 Full paper
Chromosomal divergence and evolutionary inferences in Rhodniini based on the chromosomal location of ribosomal genes

Sebastián Pita1, Francisco Panzera1, Inés Ferrandis1, Cleber Galvão2, Andrés Gómez-Palacio3, Yanina Panzera1,+

1Sección Genética Evolutiva, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de la República, Montevideo, Uruguay
2Laboratório Nacional e Internacional de Referência em Taxonomia de Triatomíneos, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz-Fiocruz, Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brasil
3Grupo de Biología y Control de Enfermedades Infecciosas, Sede de Investigación Universitaria, Instituto de Biología, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín, Colombia

Abstract

In this study, we used fluorescence in situ hybridisation to determine the chromosomal location of 45S rDNA clusters in 10 species of the tribe Rhodniini (Hemiptera: Reduviidae: Triatominae). The results showed striking inter and intraspecific variability, with the location of the rDNA clusters restricted to sex chromosomes with two patterns: either on one (X chromosome) or both sex chromosomes (X and Y chromosomes). This variation occurs within a genus that has an unchanging diploid chromosome number (2n = 22, including 20 autosomes and 2 sex chromosomes) and a similar chromosome size and genomic DNA content, reflecting a genome dynamic not revealed by these chromosome traits. The rDNA variation in closely related species and the intraspecific polymorphism in Rhodnius ecuadoriensis suggested that the chromosomal position of rDNA clusters might be a useful marker to identify recently diverged species or populations. We discuss the ancestral position of ribosomal genes in the tribe Rhodniini and the possible mechanisms involved in the variation of the rDNA clusters, including the loss of rDNA loci on the Y chromosome, transposition and ectopic pairing. The last two processes involve chromosomal exchanges between both sex chromosomes, in contrast to the widely accepted idea that the achiasmatic sex chromosomes of Heteroptera do not interchange sequences.

Received 7 November 2012
Accepted 7 February 2013
Financial support: CSIC-Udelar, PEDECIBA, ANII
+ Corresponding author: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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