Research Article

Population structure and genetic diversity in Gynaikothrips uzeli (Thysanoptera: Phlaeothripidae): is there a correlation between genetic and geographic proximity?

Published: August 19, 2015
Genet. Mol. Res. 14 (3) : 9793-9803 DOI: 10.4238/2015.August.19.12

Abstract

Gynaikothrips uzeli (Thysanoptera: Phlaeothripidae) is a minuscule insect species, which forms galls, is subsocial, and parthenogenetic. It is associated with Ficus benjamina L. (Moraceae) and has a pantropical occurrence. The paucity of genetic studies on the order Thysanoptera led us to use inter-simple sequence repeat molecular marker to assess intra- and inter-gall, as well as intra- and inter-site, genetic variability and population structure of G. uzeli. Analyses indicated low genetic variability, probably related to haplodiploidy, genetic drift, the galling habit, and the low dispersal ability of G. uzeli. Populations were highly structured, with higher variation within populations than among them. Geographic distance does not appear to affect structure and genetic diversity, the latter being influenced by G. uzeli’s bioecological traits, by numerous introductions during a short period, and by a possible recent, common ancestry.

Gynaikothrips uzeli (Thysanoptera: Phlaeothripidae) is a minuscule insect species, which forms galls, is subsocial, and parthenogenetic. It is associated with Ficus benjamina L. (Moraceae) and has a pantropical occurrence. The paucity of genetic studies on the order Thysanoptera led us to use inter-simple sequence repeat molecular marker to assess intra- and inter-gall, as well as intra- and inter-site, genetic variability and population structure of G. uzeli. Analyses indicated low genetic variability, probably related to haplodiploidy, genetic drift, the galling habit, and the low dispersal ability of G. uzeli. Populations were highly structured, with higher variation within populations than among them. Geographic distance does not appear to affect structure and genetic diversity, the latter being influenced by G. uzeli’s bioecological traits, by numerous introductions during a short period, and by a possible recent, common ancestry.