Chinese Science Bulletin

, Volume 50, Issue 13, pp 1326–1334 | Cite as

Molecular phylogenetics of Gymnocypris (Teleostei: Cyprinidae) in Lake Qinghai and adjacent drainages

  • Kai Zhao
  • Junbing Li
  • Gongshe Yang
  • Ziyuan Duan
  • Shunping He
  • Yiyu Chen


149 complete mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) cytochrome b (Cyt b) genes (1140 bp) of Gymnocypris przewalskii, Gymnocypris eckloni and Gymnocypris scolistomus from the Lake Qinghai, Yellow River and Qaidam Basin were sequenced and analyzed. Consistent dendrogram indicated that the samples collected from the same species do not constitute a separate monophyletic group and all the samples were grouped into three highly divergent lineages (A, B and C). Among them, Lineage A contained all samples of G. przewalskii from the Lake Qinghai and partial samples of the G. eckloni from the Yellow River. Lineage B contained the remaining samples of G. eckloni from the Yellow River. Lineage C was composed of a monophyletic group by G. eckloni from the Qaidam Basin. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) indicated that most of genetic variations were detected within these three mtDNA lineages (93.12%), suggesting that there are three different lineages of Gymnocypris in this region. Our Cyt b sequence data showed that G. przewalskii was not a polytypic species, and G. scolistomus was neither an independent species nor a subspecies of G. eckloni. The divergent mtDNA lineages of G. eckloni from the Yellow River suggested that gene flow between the different populations was restricted to a certain extent by several gorges on the upper reach of the Yellow River. Lineage B of G. eckloni might be the genetic effect from the ancestor which was incorporated with the endemic schizothoracine fishes when the headward erosion of the Yellow River reached to its current headwaters of late. The G. eckloni from Basin Qaidam was a monophyletic group (lineage C) and Fst values within G. eckloni from the Yellow River were higher than 0.98, suggesting that the gene flow has been interrupted for a long time and the G. eckloni from Basin Qaidam might have been evolved into different species by ecology segregation. The correlation between the rakers number of Gymnocypris and population genetic variation was not significant. All Gymnocypris populations exhibited a low nucleotide diversity (π = 0.00096–0.00485). Therefore the Gymnocypris populations from Basin Qaidam could have experienced severe bottleneck effect in history. Our result suggested Gymnocypris populations of Basin Qaidam should give a high priority in conservation programs.


Gymnocypris przewalskii Gymnocypris eckloni Gymnocypris scoliostomus cytochrome b (Cyt bCyprinidae Schizothoracinae molecular phylogeny 


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Copyright information

© Science in China Press 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kai Zhao
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  • Junbing Li
    • 1
  • Gongshe Yang
    • 2
  • Ziyuan Duan
    • 3
  • Shunping He
    • 1
  • Yiyu Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of HydrobiologyChinese Academy of SciencesWuhanChina
  2. 2.Laboratory of Animal Fat Deposition and Muscle DevelopmentNorthwest Sci-tech University of Agriculture and ForestryYanglingChina
  3. 3.Institute of Genetics and Developmental BiologyChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  4. 4.Agriculture and Animal Husbandry CollegeQinghai UniversityXiningChina

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