Robertsonian rearrangements and pericentric inversions in Scaridae fish (Perciformes)

D.C.S. Sena, W.F. Molina
Published September 30, 2007
Genet. Mol. Res. 6 (3): 575-580 (2007)

About the author
D.C.S. Sena, W.F. Molina

Corresponding author: W.F. Molina


The parrotfishes (family Scaridae) are comprised of the subfamilies Sparisomatinae and Scarinae. They are important agents of marine bioerosion, which rework the substrate with their beaklike jaws. Despite their importance, there are no published cytogenetic data on this group. We made cytogenetic analyses of Sparisoma axillare (Sparisomatinae) and Scarus coelestinus (Scarinae) from the Brazilian coast. Differentiation in the diploid number in S. axillare compared to the basal karyotype of the Perciformes apparently occurred due to a Robertsonian fusion, combined with pericentric inversions. S. coelestinus presented a conserved diploid number, but showed considerable structural karyotypic changes, resulting mainly from pericentric inversions. The Ag-NOR sites were unique and located on the short arm of the 1st subtelocentric pair in both species (possibly homeologous), corresponding to the 11th pair in S. axillare and the 9th pair in S. coelestinus. The constitutive heterochromatin is reduced in these species and is distributed in centromeric and pericentromeric regions in most of the chromosomes. The low fundamental number compared to the Scarus genus suggests a more basal condition for Sparisoma. The chromosome formula in S. coelestinus was more diversified, deriving from large-scale pericentric inversions. Karyotypic evolution patterns observed for these representatives of the Sparisomatinae and Scarinae subfamilies, added to new data from a larger number of species, would allow us to determine if there is a tendency among the Sparisomatinae for centric fusion events.

Key words: Sparisomatinae, Scarinae, Scaridae, fish cytogenetics, Robertsonian rearrangements 

Back To Top