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Abstracts - Diego Assis

CAN CUTICULAR HYDROCARBONS BE USED AS A PHYLOGENETIC CHARACTER IN ATTINA ANTS (HYMENOPTERA: FORMICIDAE)?

Diego Assis1*, Sidnei Mateus1,2, Fabio Nascimento1,3

1 FFCLRP, Universidade de São Paulo

2 sidneim@ffclrp.usp.br

3 fnascim@usp.br

* Correspondence: diegoassis@usp.br

Cuticular hydrocarbons (CHC) provide much information about caste, age, and function in social insects. Some authors show that the CHC are viable and very informative to infer about the phylogenetic relationship among the species. Our objective was to verify if CHC could be used as a phylogenetic character in Attina ants (Fungus-growing ants). We used 14 species of Hymenoptera (11 ants, 2 wasps and 1 bee). From these, 10 species were Attina ants. All chemical analyses were performed in gas chromatograph and mass spectrometry. The compounds were identified using the mass profile and pattern (21-40C). The compounds were transformed in a table of presence / absence. To measure the phylogenetic signal of the class of compounds we test the K of Bloomberg and the Pagel’s λ. Moreover, we used two approachs to build the topology (Bayesian and Parsimony). To the Bayesian approach, we used the software Mr. Bayes v.3.2.6 and to parsimony approach, we used the TNT program v.1.5. In addition, we compared our topologies with that present in the literature. The CHCs did not have phylogenetic signal to Attina ants in any class of compounds (Alkane = [K = 0.42, p = 0.85; λ < 0.001, p = 1], Olefins = [K = 0.52, p = 0.52, λ < 0.001, p = 1], Branched Alkane = [K = 0.61, p = 0.28; λ < 0.001, p = 1]). Our topology also was not congruent with the literature topology. In the two approaches, the bee species (Apis mellifera) was rooted into Attina group. In a similar way, Polybia paulista was considered a sister-group of Atta sexdens in parsimony, and Acromyrmex echinator in Bayesian analysis. To summarize, all Attina group topology was not congruent with genetic and morphology analysis present in the literature. Some genera were reallocated into another and vice-versa. We concluded that use CHC to infer phylogenetic topology it may be misleading and lead to error of relationship among these species.

Financial support: FAPESP Nº. Proc. 2015/17358-0