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Genetic and cytogenetic variation of African root-rats Tachyoryctes splendens (Mammalia: Rodentia) from Ethiopia
Lavrenchenko L.A., Mengistu S., Bulatova N.Sh., Bekele A., Potapov S.G., Nadjafova R.S., Belay G.
P. 109-118
Genetic and cytogenetic variation of African root-rats Tachyoryctes splendens sensu lato from Ethiopia was assessed on 23 complete cytochrome b gene sequences (1140 bp) and chromosomal sets from eight individuals. Results of this study suggest that the real diversity of Ethiopian Tachyoryctes splendens s.l. has been underestimated due to its apparent cryptic diversification. The molecular genetic analysis reveals genetic subdivision including at least four allopatric and deeply divergent mitochondrial lineages, restricted to the Simien Mountains and the Northern, Southern and Eastern parts of the Ethiopian Plateau. Three of them possess unique karyotypes while chromosomal characteristics of the Eastern lineage remain unknown. These lineages may represent distinct species, however additional analyses of molecular, chromosomal and morphological data should be conducted to confirm our preliminary results and provide a real basis for species delimitation within Ethiopian Tachyoryctes splendens s.l.

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