Molecular phylogeny of the genus Drosophila and closely related genera (Diptera: Drosophilidae)

The drosophilid species is one of the extensively studied organisms in biological science. Nevertheless, the phylogenetic relationship of the subfamily Drosophilinae, which should provide a basis for the various studies using drosophilids, has not been well established. In order to solve this problem, we performed phylogenetic analyses using nuclear DNA sequences for several species that have not been analyzed in previous studies. In the phylogenetic trees, the Sophophora lineage, which includes D. melanogaster, was separated prior to the divergence of other drosophilid lineages. The subgenus Drosophila emerged as paraphyletic to Hirtodrosophila, Mycodrosophila, and Hawaiian Drosphilidae. The genus Lordiphosa emerged as a polyphyletic group, in which the major Lordiphosa lineage emerged as a closest sister taxon to the wiilistoni and saltans groups of Sophophora whereas the tenuicauda group of Lordiphosa was included in the assemblage of Drosophila and Hirtodrosphila. Hawaiian Drosophilidae constituted a clade together with D. annulipes and D. maculinotata, and they emerged as a sister clade to the virilis-repleta lineage of Drosophila. While these results on the whole are in agreement with Throckmorton's (1975) classical hypothesis rather than Grimaldi's (1990) recent one, we obtained some additional findings that have not been presented in previous studies.

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