Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Ankara, Türkiye, 10 - 12 Temmuz 2019, ss.42
Sea squirts (Tunicata) are the closest invertebrate relatives to the vertebrates. Botryllus and Botrylloides are two genera of botryllid ascidians which is the only chordate group having the ability of whole-body regeneration. In this study, we targeted to determine phylogeographic resolution of Botrylloides leachii in the North-eastern Mediterranean Sea by using mitochondrial and nuclear DNA markers (COI and H3). In total 232 samples collected from 8 spatial stations from West to East as Kemer-Side-Alanya-Tershane (Antalya), Tisan-Kız Kalesi-Mezitli (Mersin) and Konacık (Iskenderun). Present study sequences also compared with the sequences that mined from databases, to construct network and phylogenetic trees. Furthermore, living individuals were investigated under light and stereo microscopes to identify their life cycles. Molecular analyses resulted low resolution for the COI gene region among the North-Eastern Mediterranean’s B. leachii samples, so far only 2 COI haplotypes were recorded, and on the other hand H3 displayed 9 haplotypes. The results indicate the necessity of an alternative barcode region, beside of COI gene nuclear H3 region can be used to increase the resolution of the species.