Research Topic

Genetics, Evolution, and Conservation of Neotropical Fishes

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About this Research Topic

Fishes represent the most ancestral and specious group of vertebrates, and occupy more diverse aquatic environments around the world. Ichthyofauna is extremely diverse, especially in megadiverse countries occupying biogeographical regions such as the Neotropical Region, which covers an extensive area between ...

Fishes represent the most ancestral and specious group of vertebrates, and occupy more diverse aquatic environments around the world. Ichthyofauna is extremely diverse, especially in megadiverse countries occupying biogeographical regions such as the Neotropical Region, which covers an extensive area between North and South America. Much of this biodiversity will be extinct, even before science knows any aspect of its biology. Like this, Neotropical fish genetics started in the end of the 70’s with papers studing the chromosomes of Hoplias malabaricus (Family Erythrinidae) and the karyotype variation among three genera of the family Anostomidae. The topic at that time was concentrated in two Institutions from the state of São Paulo, Southeastern Brazil. In the middle 80’s, the first Symposium on Neotropical Fish Cytogenetics was organized. Nowadays, the field of Neotropical Fish Genetics is present in Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, Uruguai, Venezula, Chile, and Equador, as well as outside South America in Panama, Mexico, USA, Canada, Czech Republic, Germany, and Spain. The research developed in cytogenetics has focused mainly on karyotype evolution and cytotaxonomy, chromosome structure and, more recently, cytogenomics. In relation to the use of molecular markers, support has been sought for the management of populations for conservation or production in captivity. In addition, many studies have been carried out with the aim of establishing supra-specific phylogenetic relationships and clarifying species distribution scenarios by phylogeographic modeling. The genome and transcriptome of some model species begin to emerge as extremely promising and informative areas for neotropical fish.

In 2017, the Neotropical fish genetics research community celebrates the 30th anniversary of its main Meeting (today entitled Symposium on Neotropical Fish Genetics and Cytogenetics). This Research Topic is part of this celebration and aims at reporting the state of the art and its current advances in the frontier of knowledge in genetics, evolution, and conservation of neotropical fish, as well as to detect the challenges to be overcome in the next years.

Manuscripts dealing with original research in any aspect of genetics and/or cytogenetics of neotropical fishes will be considered. This Research Topic particularly welcomes manuscripts focusing on broad issues of chromosome biology and karyotype evolution, as well as aspects of genetic conservation, phylogeny, and phylogeography.


Keywords: fish genomics, Fish cytogenetics, fish molecular phylogeny, fish molecular markers, fish phylogeography


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