Comparative cytogenetics of nine populations of the Rhinella genus (Anura, Bufonidae) with a highlight on their conservative karyotype


Genet. Mol. Biol.




Abstract The genus Rhinella is one of the most diverse groups of bufonid toads, currently composed by 93 valid species and naturally distributed throughout different Neotropical ecoregions. Here, we analyze nine Brazilian populations of toads representing species of the Rhinella margaritifera and Rhinella marina groups. These new data include the first description of the R. hoogmoedi and R. proboscidae karyotypes, as well as other taxonomically unresolved forms. Chromosomal analysis of the populations revealed pronounced chromosomal uniformity (2n=22), including the diploid number and chromosomal morphology. Three different NOR-bearing chromosomes were identified: in the subterminal region of pair 10q in R. hoogmoedi, Rhinella sp. 1 and Rhinella sp. 2, in subterminal region of 7p in R. proboscidae and Rhinella cf. margaritifera while in R. henseli and R. icterica was detected in interstitial region of 7p. Karyotypic uniformity of the genus permits the inference of interspecific chromosome homologies and evolutionary changes in the NOR-bearing chromosome may represent an informative character in species group level. The review of the cytogenetic data of the Rhinella species together with the new karyotypes reported here contributes to the understanding of the chromosomal evolution of these toads, which karyotypes are highly conserved despite the ample distribution of many forms.

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