Fig. 1 - Phyllosoma larva

Phylogenetics of Achelata

The Achelata is a group of lobsters that share a unique larval phase (Fig. 1) (Scholtz and Richter, 1995; Dixon et al., 2003).  Recently, different nuclear (18S, 28S, and H3) and mitochondrial (16S and COI) gene regions were sequenced in order to test conflicting hypotheses of evolutionary relationships (Palero et al., 2009).

The main results from our study using a combined molecular dataset strongly support the hypothesis that Achelata is a monophyletic group composed of two main families: Palinuridae and Scyllaridae. Synaxidae is found to be a polyphyletic group, which should be included within Palinuridae, as previously proposed by Davie (1990).

Even though we had included Scyllarides, Parribacus, Thenus and Scyllarus samples in our previous study, we missed Arctides, Ibacus and Evibacus, so that we need more scyllarid (also Scyllarus and related genera) samples for testing Holthuis (2002) proposal.

If you have access to fresh-specimens or ethanol-fixed specimens and you are willing to collaborate on this work, we would be glad to hear from you, and your help will be most welcomed.

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Looking forward to hearing from you.