The model marine broadcast-spawner barnacle Chthamalus montagui was investigated to understand its genetic structure and quantify levels of population divergence, and to make inference on historical demography in terms of time of divergence and changes in population size. We collected specimens from rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic Ocean (4 locations), Mediterranean Sea (8) and Black Sea (1). The 312 sequences 537 bp) of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase I allowed to detect 130 haplotypes. High within-location genetic variability was recorded, with haplotype diversity ranging between h = 0.750 and 0.967. Parameters of genetic divergence, haplotype network and Bayesian assignment analysis were consistent in rejecting the hypothesis of panmixia. C. montagui is genetically structured in three geographically discrete populations, which corresponded to north-eastern Atlantic Ocean, western-central Mediterranean Sea, and Aegean Sea-Black Sea. These populations are separated by two main effective barriers to gene flow located at the Almeria-Oran Front and in correspondence of the Cyclades Islands. According to the 'isolation with migration' model, adjacent population pairs diverged during the early to middle Pleistocene transition, a period in which geological events provoked significant changes in the structure and composition of palaeocommunities. Mismatch distributions, neutrality tests and Bayesian skyline plots showed past population expansions, which started approximately in the Mindel-Riss interglacial, in which ecological conditions were favourable for temperate species and calcium-uptaking marine organisms.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
Pannacciulli, F. G., Maltagliati, F., De Guttry, C., & Achituv, Y. (2017). Phylogeography on the rocks: The contribution of current and historical factors in shaping the genetic structure of Chthamalus montagui (Crustacea, Cirripedia). PLoS One, 12(6), -. [e0178287]. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0178287