Phylogeography of the rock shell Thais clavigera (Mollusca): Evidence for long-distance dispersal in the northwestern Pacific

Xiang Guo, Dan Zhao, Daewui Jung, Qi Li, Ling Feng Kong, Gang Ni, Tomoyuki Nakano, Akihiko Matsukuma, Sanghee Kim, Chungoo Park, Hyuk Je Lee, Joong Ki Park

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The present-day genetic structure of a species reflects both historical demography and patterns of contemporary gene flow among populations. To precisely understand how these factors shape current population structure of the northwestern (NW) Pacific marine gastropod, Thais clavigera, we determined the partial nucleotide sequences of the mitochondrial COI gene for 602 individuals sampled from 29 localities spanning almost the whole distribution of T. clavigera in the NW Pacific Ocean (∼3,700 km). Results from population genetic and demographic analyses (AMOVA, φST-statistics, haplotype networks, Tajima's D, Fu's FS, mismatch distribution, and Bayesian skyline plots) revealed a lack of genealogical branches or geographical clusters, and a high level of genetic (haplotype) diversity within each of studied population. Nevertheless, low but significant genetic structuring was detected among some geographical populations separated by the Changjiang River, suggesting the presence of geographical barriers to larval dispersal around this region. Several lines of evidence including significant negative Tajima's D and Fu's FS statistics values, the unimodally shaped mismatch distribution, and Bayesian skyline plots suggest a population expansion at marine isotope stage 11 (MIS 11; 400 ka), the longest and warmest interglacial interval during the Pleistocene epoch. The lack of genetic structure among the great majority of the NW Pacific T. clavigera populations may be attributable to high gene flow by current-driven long-distance dispersal of prolonged planktonic larval phase of this species.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0129715
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number7
StatePublished - 14 Jul 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Guo et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


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