In this study, we investigated the mitotic and meiotic chromosomes of 11 Buthidae scorpion species, belonging to three genera (Ananteris, Rhopalurus and Tityus), to obtain detailed knowledge regarding the mechanisms underlying the intraspecific and/or interspecific diversity of chromosome number and the origin of the complex chromosome associations observed during meiosis. The chromosomes of all species did not exhibit a localised centromere region and presented synaptic and achiasmatic behaviour during meiosis I. Spermatogonial and/or oogonial metaphase cells of these buthids showed diploid numbers range from 2n = 6 to 2n = 28. In most species, multivalent chromosome associations were observed in pachytene and postpachytene nuclei. Moreover, intraspecific variability associated with the presence or absence of chromosome chains and the number of chromosomes in the complex meiotic configurations was observed in some species of these three genera. Silver-impregnated cells revealed that the number and location of nucleolar organiser regions (NORs) remained unchanged despite extensive chromosome variation; notably, two NORs located on the terminal or subterminal chromosome regions were commonly observed for all species. C-banded and fluorochrome-stained cells showed that species with conspicuous blocks of heterochromatin exhibited the lowest rate of chromosomal rearrangement. Based on the investigation of mitotic and meiotic cells, we determined that the intraspecific variability occurred as a consequence of fission/fusion-type chromosomal rearrangements in Ananteris and Tityus species and reciprocal translocation in Rhopalurus species. Furthermore, we verified that individuals presenting the same diploid number differ in structural chromosome organisation, giving rise to intraspecific differences of chromosome association in meiotic cells (bivalent-like elements or chromosome chains).
Mitotic and meiotic chromosomes of Tityus bahiensis were investigated using light (LM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM) to determine the chromosomal characteristics and disclose the mechanisms responsible for intraspecific variability in chromosome number and for the presence of complex chromosome association during meiosis. This species is endemic to Brazilian fauna and belongs to the family Buthidae, which is considered phylogenetically basal within the order Scorpiones. In the sample examined, four sympatric and distinct diploid numbers were observed: 2n = 5, 2n = 6, 2n = 9, and 2 = 10. The origin of this remarkable chromosome variability was attributed to chromosome fissions and/or fusions, considering that the decrease in chromosome number was concomitant with the increase in chromosome size and vice versa. The LM and TEM analyses showed the presence of chromosomes without localised centromere, the lack of chiasmata and recombination nodules in male meiosis, and two nucleolar organiser regions carrier chromosomes. Furthermore, male prophase I cells revealed multivalent chromosome associations and/or unsynapsed or distinctly associated chromosome regions (gaps, less-condensed chromatin, or loop-like structure) that were continuous with synapsed chromosome segments. All these data permitted us to suggest that the chromosomal rearrangements of T. bahiensis occurred in a heterozygous state. A combination of various factors, such as correct disjunction and balanced segregation of the chromosomes involved in complex meiotic pairing, system of achiasmate meiosis, holocentric nature of the chromosomes, population structure, and species dispersion patterns, could have contributed to the high level of chromosome rearrangements present in T. bahiensis.
The order Scorpiones is one of the most cytogenetically interesting groups within Arachnida by virtue of the combination of chromosome singularities found in the 59 species analyzed so far. In this work, mitotic and meiotic chromosomes of 2 species of the family Bothriuridae were detailed. This family occupies a basal position within the superfamily Scorpionoidea. Furthermore, review of the cytogenetic data of all previously studied scorpions is presented. Light microscopy chromosome analysis showed that Bothriurus araguayae and Bothriurus rochensis possess low diploid numbers compared with those of species belonging to closely related families. Gonadal cells examined under light and in transmission electron microscopy revealed, for the first time, that the Bothriuridae species possess typical monocentric chromosomes, and male meiosis presented chromosomes with synaptic and achiasmatic behavior. Moreover, in the sample of B. araguayae studied, heterozygous translocations were verified. The use of techniques to highlight specific chromosomal regions also revealed additional differences between the 2 Bothriurus species. The results herein recorded and the overview elaborated using the available cytogenetic information of Scorpiones elucidated current understanding regarding the processes of chromosome evolution that have occurred in Bothriuridae and in Scorpiones as a whole.
This work deals with the comparative cytogenetic analysis of four Neotropical Elateridae species and reviews the nucleolar organizer region (NOR) patterns on Coleoptera chromosomes, for the first time. The cytogenetic characterization of Conoderus malleatus (Conoderini), Pyrearinus candelarius, Pyrophorus divergens and Pyrophorus punctatissimus (Pyrophorini) was accomplished through the study of mitotic and meiotic cells submitted to standard (Giemsa) and differential staining [silver impregnation and GC-specific chromomycin A 3 (CMA 3 ) plus AT-specific 4¢-6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) fluorochromes]. The analysis of spermatogonial cells revealed the diploid numbers: 2n ¼ 17 in C. malleatus and 2n ¼ 15 in P. candelarius, P. divergens and P. punctatissimus. In these species, the X0 type sex-determination system and the acrocentric morphology of almost all chromosomes were observed. The study of meiotic cells of the four species revealed the occurrence of total synapsis between the autosomes, the presence of one terminal or interstitial chiasma in the majority of the bivalents, and the reductional behaviour and regular segregation of all chromosomes. Although the three Pyrophorini species demonstrated many similar karyotypical characteristics, there was one discrepancy, which was noted in the diplotene cells and concerns the number of bivalents with two chiasmata; P. candelarius only presented one bivalent, P. divergens showed two bivalents and P. punctatissimus exhibited up to four bivalents with two chiasmata. Testicular cells impregnated with silver nitrate demonstrated two terminal NORs located on the fourth autosomal pair of the Conoderini species and on the second autosomal pair of the three Pyrophorini representatives. Use of CMA 3 /distamycin A (DA)/DAPI staining on the P. candelarius and P. punctatissimus chromosomes revealed that the CMA 3 labelled regions were coincident with the NORs. The main strategies of karyotypical differentiation that have occurred among the four Elateridae species and other related species, and the general trends of the NOR shifts during Coleoptera chromosomal evolution are discussed in this work.
As part of a program to understand the genetics of Amazonian ornamental fish, classical cytogenetics was used to analyze Symphysodon aequifasciatus, S. discus and S. haraldi, popular and expensive aquarium fishes that are endemic to the Amazon basin. Mitotic analyses in Symphysodon have shown some odd patterns compared with other Neotropical cichlids. We have confirmed that Symphysodon species are characterized by chromosomal diversity and meiotic complexity despite the fact that species share the same diploid number 2n ¼ 60. An intriguing meiotic chromosomal chain, with up to 20 elements during diplotene/ diakinesis, was observed in S. aequifasciatus and S. haraldi, whereas S. discus only contains typical bivalent chromosomes. Such chromosomal chains with a high number of elements have not been observed in any other vertebrates. We showed that the meiotic chromosomal chain was not sex related. This observation is unusual and we propose that the origin of meiotic multiples in males and females is based on a series of translocations that involved heterochromatic regions after hybridization of ancestor wild Discus species.
The present study elevates the number of cytogenetically analyzed ctenid species and genera from two to eight and six, respectively, presenting comparisons between chromosomal data obtained and the phylogenetic hypothesis proposed in the literature. Six ctenid species presented 13 autosomal pairs, exhibiting either X1X2O (Ctenus ornatus, Ctenus sp., Parabatinga brevipes and Phoneutria nigriventer) or X1X2X3O sex chromosome systems (Nothroctenus sp. and Viracucha andicola). Asthenoctenus borellii showed 2n ♂ = 20 + X1X2O. In all species, the chromosomes were telocentric. Some cells of one C. ornatus specimen exhibited one extra chromosome that, considering the behavioral similarities between the two chromosomes, can be considered to be supernumerary, derived from or giving rise to a sex chromosome. Silver impregnation revealed nucleolar organizer regions on one autosomal pair of C. ornatus and P. nigriventer (Cteninae) and two pairs of V. andicola (Acanthocteninae). Chromosomal data suggests that the X1X2X3O system arose several times in the evolution of entelegyne spiders, and that conversion of an X1X2O system into an X1X2X3O system and vice-versa has been a relatively common event in spiders. All the chromosomal data corroborate the close relationship between Ctenus and Phoneutria, the placement of P. brevipes within Cteninae, the placement of Anahita in a separated branch within Cteninae, and the inclusion of A. borellii in a distinct group within the ctenids (Viridasiinae), all of which are as proposed by phylogenetic hypotheses available in the literature.
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