Deltocyathiidae, an early-diverging family of Robust corals (Anthozoa, Scleractinia)

Kitahara, Marcelo V., Cairns, Stephen D., Stolarski, Jaroslaw, and Miller, David J. (2013) Deltocyathiidae, an early-diverging family of Robust corals (Anthozoa, Scleractinia). Zoologica Scripta, 42 (2). pp. 201-212.

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Over the last decade, molecular phylogenetics has called into question some fundamental aspects of coral systematics. Within the Scleractinia, most families composed exclusively by zooxanthellate species are polyphyletic on the basis of molecular data, and the second most speciose coral family, the Caryophylliidae (most members of which are azooxanthellate), is an unnatural grouping. As part of the process of resolving taxonomic affinities of 'caryophylliids', here a new 'Robust' scleractinian family (Deltocyathiidae fam. n.) is proposed on the basis of combined molecular (CO1 and 28S rDNA) and morphological data, accommodating the early-diverging clade of traditional caryophylliids (represented today by the genus Deltocyathus). Whereas this family captures the full morphological diversity of the genus Deltocyathus, one species, Deltocyathus magnificus, is an outlier in terms of molecular data, and groups with the 'Complex' coral family Turbinoliidae. Ultrastructural data, however, place D. magnificus within Deltocyathiidae fam. nov. Unfortunately, limited ultrastructural data are as yet available for turbinoliids, but D. magnificus may represent the first documented case of morphological convergence at the microstructural level among scleractinian corals.

Item ID: 25522
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1463-6409
Date Deposited: 13 Mar 2013 05:26
FoR Codes: 06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0603 Evolutionary Biology > 060309 Phylogeny and Comparative Analysis @ 30%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0603 Evolutionary Biology > 060399 Evolutionary Biology not elsewhere classified @ 40%
06 BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES > 0608 Zoology > 060808 Invertebrate Biology @ 30%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970106 Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences @ 100%
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