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Evolution and ontogeny of the hypertrofied antebrachial tubercle of Pseudopaludicola (Anura, Leptodactylidae, Leiuperinae)

Grant number: 20/08291-8
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Post-Doctoral
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2022
Effective date (End): May 31, 2025
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Zoology - Morphology of Recent Groups
Principal Investigator:Tiana Kohlsdorf
Grantee:Felipe Silva de Andrade
Host Institution: Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto (FFCLRP). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Ribeirão Preto , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:20/14780-1 - Evo-Devo in dynamic environments: implications of climatic changes in the biodiversity, AP.BTA.TEM

Abstract

Research programs in Evolutionary Biology often dissociate evaluation of evolutionary trajectories as a contingent and non-programmed process from interpretations of development as a cyclical and genetically-programmed mechanism. However, approaches that integrate analyses of phylogenetic structuration in evolutionary patterns with developmental mechanisms enable relevant advances for a complete understanding of phenotypic diversification in animal lineages. The Neotropical clade Pseudopaludicola currently comprises 25 frog species distributed along South America, and exhibits a hypertrophied antebrachial tubercle easily recognizable as an autapomorphy. The present proposal aims to evaluate the evolutionary patterns and likely associations between the hypertrophied antebraquial tubercle and possible increments in sexual dimorphism of other morphological traits and/or specific reproductive behaviors. These analyses will be complemented by sophisticated histological descriptions of developmental stages in this structure and evaluation of gene expression levels during the formation of this trait, in order to infer the development mechanisms associated to the origin of this phenotype and identify in which ontogenetic stages (metamorphosis or sexual maturation) it develops in Pseudopaludicola species. (AU)

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