PCR-based nuclear and mtDNA markers and shell morphology as an approach to study the taxonomic status of the Chilean blue mussel, Mytilus chilensis (Bivalvia)
Instituto de Biología Marina, Universidad Austral de Chile, Casilla 567, Valdivia, Chile
Accepted: 26 June 1998
Most recent authors have called the Chilean blue mussel (formerly Mytilus chilensis) Mytilus edulis. Mussels from four nominal species (Mytilus edulis, M. trossulus, M. galloprovincialis and M. chilensis) were collected from the eastern coast of Newfoundland, Canada, New Zealand and the southern coast of Chile. Canonical discriminant analysis of selected shell morphometrical characters showed that although there is some overlap in canonical variates, the three nominal species, M. edulis, M. trossulus and M. chilensis can be morphologically divided into three distinct groups. The two nuclear-DNA markers (ITS and Glu-5) and the mtDNA marker studied indicate that the nuclear and mitochondrial genomes of M. edulis and M. trossulus are different. M. edulis, M. galloprovincialis and M. chilensis share similar restriction fragment patterns for the mtDNA and for the ITS nuclear-DNA marker, while the Glu-5 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay showed that the M. edulis and M. chilensis genotypes disagree, producing species-specific banding patterns that can be used as a diagnostic marker between the two nominal species. The molecular and morphometric data reported here give more evidence to support the view of other authors that the Chilean blue mussel should be included as M. edulis subspecies: Mytilus edulis chilensis.
Key words: PCR / nuclear markers / mitochondrial DNA / Mytilus chilensis / Mytilus edulis / Mytilus trossulus / Mytilus galloprovincialis
© Elsevier, IRD, Inra, Ifremer, Cemagref, CNRS, 1998