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Lamb, T., Meeker, A.M., Bauer, A.M. and Branch, W.R. 2003. On the systematic status of the desert plated lizard (Angolosaurus skoogi): phylogenetic inference from DNA sequence analysis of the African Gerrhosauridae. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 78: 253–261


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On the systematic status of the desert plated lizard (Angolosaurus skoogi): phylogenetic inference from DNA sequence analysis of the African Gerrhosauridae.

Summary / Notes:

The desert plated lizard (Angolosaurus skoogi), a 'sand sea' endemic of the northern Namib Desert, exhibits remarkablernmorphological convergence with other dune-dwelling lizards worldwide. This distinct ecomorphic condition sets Angolosaurusrnapart from the remaining genera in the family Gerrhosauridae. Indeed, a morphological phylogeny addressing generic relationships within the Cordyliformes (Cordylidae +rnGerrhosauridae) identified Angolosaurus as the earliest diverging taxon among African gerrhosaurids. We re-evaluated the basal status of Angolosaurus, conducting a molecular phylogenetic analysis of the African and Madagascan gerrhosaurid genera. Our survey involved a comprehensive species-level comparison among the four nominal genera of mainland Africa (Angolosaurus, Cordylosaurus, Tetradactylus and Gerrhosaurus). Mitochondrial DNA sequence data from the cytochrome brn, ND2, 12S and 16S rRNA genes were combined for analysis using both parsimony and maximum likelihood procedures. In contrastrnto the morphological hypothesis, our results do not depictrnAngolosaurus as the sister taxon to other African gerrhosaurids.rnRather, the molecular analyses consistently place Angolosaurusrnwithin Gerrhosaurus, rendering the latter genus paraphyletic. Keywords: convergent evolution, Gerrhosaurus, mitochondrial DNA, Namib Desert, ultrapsammophile.

Year: 2003

Type: Journal Article

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