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Integrating morphological and molecular data in the systematics of three siluriform subgroups: subfamily Copionodontinae (Trichomycteridae), genus Pimelodella (Heptapteridae) and family Cetopsidae

Grant number: 15/26804-4
Support type:Regular Research Grants
Duration: August 01, 2016 - May 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology
Principal Investigator:Mario Cesar Cardoso de Pinna
Grantee:Mario Cesar Cardoso de Pinna
Home Institution: Museu de Zoologia (MZ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


This project will apply comparative data from morphology and nucleotidic sequences to elucidate the systematics (taxonomy and phylogenetic relationships) of three different subgroups of neotropical siluriforms the trichomycterid subfamily Copionodontinae, the family Cetopsidae and the heptapterid genus Pimelodella. The common thread of the study is to integrate data from distinct sources in order to resolve common problems related to taxonomic delimitation and phylogenetic relationships. Because the nature of the problems, the methodology adopted and the resources needed are similar, it is more productive to unite the three subprojects into a single integrated effort. Such strategy will minimize costs and maximize the relevance of results. The taxonomic groups selected are those considered particularly appropriate, for reasons particular to each one, to tackle the different dimensions of the strategy. The Copionodontinae are are a basal subgroup of Trichomycteridae with geographical distribution restricted to the upper parts of the Rio Paraguaçu basin in Northeastern Brazil. it is certainly an ancient lineage, but whose current diversity is restricted and narrowly associated with the history of the Diamantina Plateau. Because of its well-circumscribed nature and current state of knowledge, research with the group will cover the entire spectrum of the focuses of this project: from taxonomic differentiation to phylogenetic relationships. The family Cetopsidae is the topic of the second subproject. The family will be subject to their first attempt at a molecular phylogeny, to be integrated with phenotypic data and results already published by the PI, with the addition of new morphological data derived from a previously uncharted system (comparative neurology). This work is in part the thesis project of a student currently working under supervision of the PI. Finally, we will approach the genus Pimelodella, of Heptapterdae, one of the great taxonomic bottlenecks of neotropical ichthyology. In this case, the study will focus on taxonomy only, where the analysis of molecular differentiation of a subgroup of the genus will serve as a model to evaluate the results of a revisionary study on traditional bases. That revision is also currently the subject of a PhD thesis under supervision of the PI. Results are expected to represent a realistic approximation to the diversity and evolution of each of the respective groups. Taken as a whole, conclusions will permit broad generalizations about the level of congruence or disagreement between molecular and morphological data, both in taxonomy and phylogenetic relationships. In turn, this will allow an estimate of the degree of reciprocal illumination that can be expected from integrative approaches, both in taxonomy and in phylogenetic analysis. The degree of congruence between disjunct data sets will also allow estimates of the reliability of results. This project represents an effort for the expansion of the research perspectives in the ichthyology section of the Museu de Zoologia, which has been a center of production of traditional systematic knowledge for many years. The integration of traditional morphological taxonomic data with their molecular counterparts is a natural and expected evolution of the research activities in our institution and something which has been encouraged in recent years. (AU)

Articles published in Agência FAPESP about the research grant
New Amazonian fish family discovered for first time in 40 years 

Scientific publications (5)
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
SLOBODIAN, VERONICA; PASTANA, MURILO N. L. Description of a new Pimelodella (Siluriformes: Heptapteridae) species with a discussion on the upper pectoral girdle homology of Siluriformes. Journal of Fish Biology, v. 93, n. 5, p. 901-916, NOV 2018. Web of Science Citations: 0.
DE PINNA, MARIO; ABRAHAO, VITOR; REIS, VINICIUS; ZANATA, ANGELA. A new species of Copionodon representing a relictual occurrence of the Copionodontinae (Siluriformes: Trichomycteridae), with a CT-scan imaging survey of key subfamilial features. Neotropical Ichthyology, v. 16, n. 4, p. -, 2018. Web of Science Citations: 0.
DE PINNA, MARIO; BURGER, RAFAEL; ZANATA, ANGELA MARIA. A new species of Copionodon lacking a free orbital rim (Siluriformes: Trichomycteridae). Neotropical Ichthyology, v. 16, n. 2, p. -, 2018. Web of Science Citations: 1.
SLOBODIAN, VERONICA; AKAMA, ALBERTO; DUTRA, GUILHERME MOREIRA. A new species of Pimelodella (Siluriformes: Heptapteridae) from the Guiana Shield, Brazil. Zootaxa, v. 4338, n. 1, p. 85-100, OCT 24 2017. Web of Science Citations: 1.

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