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Easton, E.E., E.M. Darrow, T. Spears & D. Thistle. (2014). The mitochondrial genomes of Amphiascoides atopus and Schizopera knabeni (Harpacticoida: Miraciidae) reveal similarities between the copepod orders Harpacticoida and Poecilostomatoida. Gene. 538(1): 123-137.
Easton, E.E., E.M. Darrow, T. Spears & D. Thistle
The mitochondrial genomes of Amphiascoides atopus and Schizopera knabeni (Harpacticoida: Miraciidae) reveal similarities between the copepod orders Harpacticoida and Poecilostomatoida.
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Members of subclass Copepoda are abundant, diverse, and-as a result of their variety of ecological roles in marine and freshwater environments-important, but their phylogenetic interrelationships are unclear. Recent studies of arthropods have used gene arrangements in the mitochondrial (mt) genome to infer phylogenies, but for copepods, only seven complete mt genomes have been published. These data revealed several within-order and few among-order similarities. To increase the data available for comparisons, we sequenced the complete mt genome (13,831base pairs) of Amphiascoides atopus and 10,649base pairs of the mt genome of Schizopera knabeni (both in the family Miraciidae of the order Harpacticoida). Comparison of our data to those for Tigriopus japonicus (family Harpacticidae, order Harpacticoida) revealed similarities in gene arrangement among these three species that were consistent with those found within and among families of other copepod orders. Comparison of the mt genomes of our species with those known from other copepod orders revealed the arrangement of mt genes of our Harpacticoida species to be more similar to that of Sinergasilus polycolpus (order Poecilostomatoida) than to that of T. japonicus. The similarities between S. polycolpus and our species are the first to be noted across the boundaries of copepod orders and support the possibility that mt-gene arrangement might be used to infer copepod phylogenies. We also found that our two species had extremely truncated transfer RNAs and that gene overlaps occurred much more frequently than has been reported for other copepod mt genomes.