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Journal of Biological Sciences
Year: 2008  |  Volume: 8  |  Issue: 2  |  Page No.: 278 - 287

Phylogenetic Relationships of Wildlife Order Carnivora in Thailand Inferred from the Internal Transcribed Spacer Region

Arunrat Chaveerach, Nattapong Srisamoot, Suporn Nuchadomrong, Nison Sattayasai, Prapansak Chaveerach, Alongkoad Tanomtong and Krit Pinthong    

Abstract: The genetic relationship of 20 Carnivora species in Thailand was determined based on sequence analysis of the Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) region of ribosomal DNA. Aligned sequences of the complete ITS region obtained from the 20 taxa and two primate outgroups resulted in 890 characters with 710 variable sites. Genetic distances and a phylogenetic tree were constructed from comparisons of ITS sequences using the Neighborjoining method. The dendogram demonstrates that the 22 taxa can be clearly grouped in six clusters: Mustelidae, Ursidae, Canidae, Felidae, Viveridae and Hylobatidae. Of these clusters, the 20 Canivora species are clustered together and the superfamilies Caniformia and Feliformia can be separated apart, whereas the outgroup Hylobatidae is segregated from the canivora. In superfamilies Caniformia, the families Mustelidae, Ursidae and Canidae are clustered together. In superfamilies Feliformia, the family Felidae is clustered with Viverridae. The phylogenetic tree of Viverridae species does not completely match the classification based on morphological characters. The Paradoxurinae, Arctictis binturong was grouped into the Viverrinae while the other Paradoxurinae, Paradoxurus hermaphroditus, Paguma larvata and Arctogalidia trivirgata are clustered together.

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