Phylogenetic reconstruction of early diverging tapeworms (Order: Caryophyllidea) reveals ancient radiations in vertebrate hosts and biogeographic regions

Tapeworms of the order Caryophyllidea are the earliest diverging ‘true’ tapeworms (Eucestoda). They are typified by a monozoic, i.e. non-proglottised body plan, which is a characteristic shared with early diverging cestodarians Gyrocotylidea and Amphilinida. Here we present the most comprehensive multi-gene molecular phylogeny of this group, to date. Specimens of 61 species from 31 genera (>50% and ~75% of known species and genus diversity, respectively) were gathered during an intense and targeted 15-year collecting effort. Phylogenetic reconstructions provide high nodal support for three major lineages, which only partly correspond to currently recognised families. Whereas morphological characteristics traditionally used to differentiate these families do not characterise molecular lineages, host association and biogeographical distribution play a key role in the circumscription of the three clades revealed by molecular data. The taxonomic arrangement proposed herein preserves names of all four extant families. Two lineages in unresolved positions at the base of the tree are the monotypic Balanotaenidae from plotosid catfishes in Australia and Lytocestoides tanganyikae (formerly in the family Lytocestidae) from African cichlids. A clade, also in an unresolved position at the base of the tree is almost exclusively comprised of parasites of catfishes (Siluriformes) from the Ethiopian and Oriental regions, including the type genus of the Lytocestidae (Lytocestus). The second clade which forms the sister group to the remaining taxa is composed of species that parasitise cyprinids and loaches (Cypriniformes: Cyprinidae sensu lato and Cobitoidei) in the Palaearctic Region. This clade includes the type genus of the Caryophyllaeidae (Caryophyllaeus). The last clade comprises Nearctic species from suckers and minnows (Cypriniformes: Catostomidae and ‘Cyprinidae’), which were previously accommodated in three families, i.e. Capingentidae, Caryophyllaeidae and Lytocestidae. This clade includes the type genus of the Capingentidae (Capingens) and thus this family name is kept for this clade. The family diagnoses of Lytocestidae, Caryophyllaeidae and Capingentidae are amended. Biogeographic patterns are indicative of past radiations having occurred separately in the tropics of Africa and Asia, and in temperate zones of North America and Eurasia. Complete absence of caryophyllideans in the Neotropical Region where numerous catfishes occur may be related to the absence of cypriniform fishes in this region and radiations having taken place after Gondwana split into the extant continents.

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Tomáš Scholz, Andrea Waeschenbach, Mikuláš Oros, Jan Brabec, D Timothy J Littlewood (2020). Dataset: Phylogenetic reconstruction of early diverging tapeworms (Order: Caryophyllidea) reveals ancient radiations in vertebrate hosts and biogeographic regions. Natural History Museum Data Portal (data.nhm.ac.uk). https://doi.org/10.5519/0081501

Retrieved: 19:50 04 Apr 2020 (GMT)

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Author(s) Tomáš Scholz, Andrea Waeschenbach, Mikuláš Oros, Jan Brabec, D Timothy J Littlewood
Affiliation Natural History Museum
Last updated February 26, 2020
Last resource update February 26, 2020 (Caryophyllidea 28S alignment)
Created February 26, 2020
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