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Use of DNA Sequences from museum specimens for the taxonomic review of Mazama

Grant number: 21/13187-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): January 01, 2022
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Taxonomy of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:José Maurício Barbanti Duarte
Grantee:Pedro Henrique de Faria Peres
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Agrárias e Veterinárias (FCAV). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Jaboticabal. Jaboticabal , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:17/07014-8 - The use of actual topotypes to produce genotypes and cytotypes in the taxonomic review of the Mazama genus: the basis for the species conservation, AP.BTA.TEM
Associated scholarship(s):23/07204-2 - The contribution of museum specimens and modern vouchers to elucidate the systematics of brocket deer (Cervidae: Odocoileini), BE.EP.PD


Brocket deer species from the genus Mazama are known as a group of mammals with important taxonomic issues. Mostly, this is due to a high level of homoplasy of morphological characters and high karyotyping diversity. This chromosomal divergence suggests that there are still many species to be described, once karyotyping differences among populations generates post-zygotic reproductive barriers. In order to conduct a taxonomic review, it is necessary to collect specimens at the type localities where each species names were previously described in a sense of verifying the presence of chromosomal barriers, distinct species and its association with names available. The study of mitochondrial DNA has been very relevant in describing the evolutionary history of Neotropical Cervids, and together with cytogenetics and morphology, it will help in the taxonomic resolution of the genus Mazama. The use of DNA from museum collections is a relatively recent tool, which has allowed the analysis of old vouchers and type specimens towards molecular approaches and phylogenetic analysis. Thus, the comparison of current topotypes characterized by cytogenetics with the original types should provide a solid basis for the taxonomic review of the group. The present project intends to collect samples of the skulls from species of Mazama in different museums. From these samples, we will perform DNA extraction, amplification and sequencing of mitochondrial gene fragments. The sequences obtained will be aligned and compared with sequences available in Genbank and from the NUPECCE database. It is expected to obtain the molecular hypothesis of species delimitation of the genus Mazama, including type specimens, which will help in solving the taxonomic and nomenclature problems of this genus.

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