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      A revision of Meladema diving beetles (Coleoptera, Dytiscidae), with the description of a new species from the central Mediterranean based on molecules and morphology

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          Abstract

          Abstract

          Meladema Laporte, 1835 are relatively large, stream-dwelling diving beetles, distributed widely in the Western Palaearctic, from the Atlantic Islands to Turkey, and from southern France and the Balkans to the central Sahara. In addition to the three previously recognised taxa ( M. coriacea Laporte, 1835, M. imbricata (Wollaston, 1871) and M. lanio (Fabricius, 1775)) we describe a new, cryptic, species from the central Mediterranean area, which can be distinguished from M. coriacea on both DNA sequence data and morphology, and provide a key to known species of the genus. Based on the study of genotyped material, both recent and archival, as well as the examination of a large number of museum specimens, we show that M. lepidoptera sp. n. occurs to the apparent exclusion of M. coriacea on Corsica, Sardinia and islands of the Tuscan Archipelago, but that both taxa are found in peninsular Italy, where they may occasionally hybridize. In the absence of the original type series, we designate a neotype for M. coriacea , and take the opportunity to designate a lectotype for M. lanio . Morphological variation in Meladema species is discussed, including that seen in known and presumed hybrids. Our study highlights the incomplete state of knowledge of Mediterranean biodiversity, even in relatively large, supposedly well-studied taxa.

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          Most cited references 77

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          Cryptic species as a window on diversity and conservation.

          The taxonomic challenge posed by cryptic species (two or more distinct species classified as a single species) has been recognized for nearly 300 years, but the advent of relatively inexpensive and rapid DNA sequencing has given biologists a new tool for detecting and differentiating morphologically similar species. Here, we synthesize the literature on cryptic and sibling species and discuss trends in their discovery. However, a lack of systematic studies leaves many questions open, such as whether cryptic species are more common in particular habitats, latitudes or taxonomic groups. The discovery of cryptic species is likely to be non-random with regard to taxon and biome and, hence, could have profound implications for evolutionary theory, biogeography and conservation planning.
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            Biological identifications through DNA barcodes.

            Although much biological research depends upon species diagnoses, taxonomic expertise is collapsing. We are convinced that the sole prospect for a sustainable identification capability lies in the construction of systems that employ DNA sequences as taxon 'barcodes'. We establish that the mitochondrial gene cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) can serve as the core of a global bioidentification system for animals. First, we demonstrate that COI profiles, derived from the low-density sampling of higher taxonomic categories, ordinarily assign newly analysed taxa to the appropriate phylum or order. Second, we demonstrate that species-level assignments can be obtained by creating comprehensive COI profiles. A model COI profile, based upon the analysis of a single individual from each of 200 closely allied species of lepidopterans, was 100% successful in correctly identifying subsequent specimens. When fully developed, a COI identification system will provide a reliable, cost-effective and accessible solution to the current problem of species identification. Its assembly will also generate important new insights into the diversification of life and the rules of molecular evolution.
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              Histone H3 and U2 snRNA DNA sequences and arthropod molecular evolution

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Zookeys
                Zookeys
                ZooKeys
                ZooKeys
                Pensoft Publishers
                1313-2989
                1313-2970
                2017
                25 September 2017
                : 702
                : 45-112
                Affiliations
                [1 ] Marine Biology and Ecology Research Centre, School of Biological and Marine Sciences, University of Plymouth, Plymouth PL4 8AA, UK
                [2 ] Institut de Biologia Evolutiva (CSIC-Universitat Pompeu Fabra), Passeig Marítim de la Barceloneta 37-49, 08003 Barcelona, Spain
                Author notes
                Corresponding author: David T. Bilton ( d.bilton@ 123456plymouth.ac.uk )

                Academic editor: M. Michat

                Article
                10.3897/zookeys.702.14787
                5673946
                29118600
                David T. Bilton, Ignacio Ribera

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Categories
                Research Article

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