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Genetic structure of the benthic amphipod Diporeia (Amphipoda: Pontoporeiidae) and its relationship to abundance in Lake Superior

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The freshwater amphipod Diporeia is a crucial part of the food web in the Laurentian Great Lakes, but has faced serious declines correlated with the invasion of zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha), except in Lake Superior, which has seen an increase in Diporeia abundance. Speculation on the mechanisms causing changes in Diporeia densities has not included the possibility of evolutionarily distinct lineages of Diporeia within the Great Lakes. In this study, we use cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) DNA sequence data to investigate the evolutionary history of Lake Superior Diporeia relative to the other Great Lakes and consider potential population structuring within Lake Superior based upon depth or geography. Our analyses reveal that Lake Superior Diporeia represent a distinct lineage that diverged from populations of the other lakes at least several hundred thousand years ago. F statistics show that two localities within Lake Superior were significantly differentiated from all other locales, but analysis of molecular variance did not find significant structure based on depth or geography. Genetic diversity within Lake Superior was not correlated with depth, although abundance was significantly negatively correlated with increasing depth.

L’amphipode d’eau douce Diporeia est un maillon essentiel du réseau alimentaire des Grands Lacs laurentiens; il a cependant subi de sérieux déclins en rapport avec l’invasion de la moule zébrée (Dreissena polymorpha), excepté au lac Supérieur où la population de Diporeia a crû en abondance. Les spéculations entourant les mécanismes qui ont provoqué les changements de densité des Diporeia n’ont pas pris en compte la possibilité de l’existence de lignées évolutives distinctes de Diporeia au sein des Grands Lacs. Nous utilisons, dans notre étude, les données de séquençage de l’ADN de cytochrome c oxydase sous-unité I (COI) pour examiner l’histoire évolutive des Diporeia du lac Supérieur en rapport avec ceux des autres Grands Lacs et pour évaluer la possibilité de l’existence d’une structure de la population du lac Supérieur en fonction de la profondeur ou de la géographie. Nos analyses révèlent que les Diporeia du lac Supérieur représentent une ligne distincte qui a divergé des populations des autres Grands Lacs il y a au moins plusieurs centaines de milliers d’années. La statistique F montre que deux sites au lac Supérieur se distinguent significativement de tous les autres sites, mais une analyse de la variance moléculaire ne discerne pas de structure significative basée sur la profondeur ou la géographie. La diversité génétique au sein du lac Supérieur n’est pas en corrélation avec la profondeur, bien que l’abondance soit en corrélation négative significative avec l’augmentation de la profondeur.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2009

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  • Published continuously since 1901 (under various titles), this monthly journal is the primary publishing vehicle for the multidisciplinary field of aquatic sciences. It publishes perspectives (syntheses, critiques, and re-evaluations), discussions (comments and replies), articles, and rapid communications, relating to current research on cells, organisms, populations, ecosystems, or processes that affect aquatic systems. The journal seeks to amplify, modify, question, or redirect accumulated knowledge in the field of fisheries and aquatic science. Occasional supplements are dedicated to single topics or to proceedings of international symposia.
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