alexa Primate genus Miopithecus: evidence for the existence of species and subspecies of dwarf guenons based on cellular and endogenous viral sequences.
Environmental Sciences

Environmental Sciences

Journal of Biodiversity & Endangered Species

Author(s): van der Kuyl AC, Dekker JT, Goudsmit J

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Abstract Sequence data from the mitochondrial 12S rRNA gene were combined with endogenous retrovirus sequences to study the position of the genus Miopithecus in the primate tree. The mitochondrial sequences indicated that Miopithecus is a true genus distinct from Cercopithecus, although talapoin monkeys are commonly referred to as dwarf guenons. The existence of two species of dwarf guenons, suggested by differences in coat color, pigmentation, and geographic location, was supported by substantial mitochondrial 12S rRNA gene divergence. In line with the informal proposal of J. Kingdon (1997, "The Kingdon Field Guide to African Mammals," Academic Press, London), we use the names Miopithecus talapoin for the southern, darker species and Miopithecus ougouensis for the northern, lighter-colored monkeys. Different 12S rRNA gene haplotypes found in M. ougouensis individuals suggest the possible existence of additional subspecies. Simian endogenous retrovirus (SERV) strain 23. 1 proviruses were introduced in the primate germ-line after the Cercopithecinae split from the Colobinae, estimated at around 9-14 million years ago. SERV sequences were used for timing of divergence events in Cercopithecinae and confirmed the close relationship between the genera Cercopithecus and Miopithecus, which was only weakly supported by the more variable mtDNA sequences in a distance analysis, demonstrating the utility of these pseudogenes in phylogenetic grouping. Copyright 2000 Academic Press. This article was published in Mol Phylogenet Evol and referenced in Journal of Biodiversity & Endangered Species

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