loading page

DNA barcodes provide insights into the diversity and biogeography of the non-biting midge Polypedilum (Diptera, Chironomidae) in South America.
  • +2
  • Fabio Laurindo Silva,
  • Luiz Pinho,
  • Elisabeth Stur,
  • Silvio Nihei,
  • Torbjorn Ekrem
Fabio Laurindo Silva
Universidade de São Paulo Instituto de Biociências

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

Author Profile
Luiz Pinho
Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina - Campus Florianópolis
Author Profile
Elisabeth Stur
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Author Profile
Silvio Nihei
Universidade de São Paulo Instituto de Biociências
Author Profile
Torbjorn Ekrem
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Author Profile


Aim The Neotropics, particularly South America, holds unparalleled high levels of species richness, when compared to other major biomes. Some neotropical areas are hotspots of a fragmentary known diversity of insects and are under manifest danger of biodiversity loss and climate change. Therefore, prompt estimates methods of its diversity are urgently required to complement slower traditional taxonomic approaches. Despite a variety of algorithms for delimiting species through single-locus DNA barcodes having been developed and applied for rapid estimates of species diversity in a wide array of taxa; however, tree-based and distance-based methods may lead to different group assignments, either overestimating or underestimating the number of putative species. Here, we investigate the performance of different DNA-based species delimitation approaches for a rapid biodiversity estimate of the diversity of Polypedilum (Chironomidae, Diptera) in South America. Location Worldwide Methods We analyze a mtDNA dataset comprising 1,492 specimens from 598 locations worldwide. Molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTUs) ranged from 267 to 520, based on the Barcode Index Number (BIN), Bayesian Poisson tree processes (bPTP), multi-rate Poisson tree processes (mPTP), single-rate Poisson tree processes (sPTP), and generalized mixed Yule coalescent (sGMYC) approaches. Results Our results highlight Polypedilum as a species-rich genus, yet incompletely documented, and found the sGMYC method to be the most adequate to estimate putative species in our dataset. Furthermore, based on these data, we describe the distribution of diversity and some biogeographical patterns of Polypedilum. Main Conclusions Findings imply the genus exhibited high levels of endemism and richness of species in the Neotropics, which confirmed our hypothesis that there are substantial differences in community structure between the Polypedilum fauna in South America and the neighboring regions.
08 Feb 2023Submitted to Ecology and Evolution
09 Feb 2023Submission Checks Completed
09 Feb 2023Assigned to Editor
15 Feb 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
08 Apr 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
03 May 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
29 Jul 20231st Revision Received
05 Aug 2023Submission Checks Completed
05 Aug 2023Assigned to Editor
05 Aug 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
30 Aug 2023Editorial Decision: Accept