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Genome size variation in lepidopteran insects

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Little information is available on genome size diversity among insects, even in otherwise well-studied groups such as the Lepidoptera. In fact, only six lepidopteran species have been studied to date. The present study therefore represents the first attempt to survey genome size variation in this group, giving estimates for more than 50 species and increasing the coverage of the order to 15 families. Based on this expanded data set, some interesting patterns of variation can be observed, albeit only in a preliminary way. By providing the first large survey of lepidopteran genome sizes, as well as some methodological guidelines and highlights of interesting future work, it is hoped that this study will stimulate further analysis of this diverse group of insects.

On connaît mal la diversité de la taille du génome chez les insectes, même chez des groupes, comme les lépidoptères, qui sont, par ailleurs, bien étudiés. En réalité, seules six espèces de lépidoptères ont été étudiés sous cet angle. Notre étude est donc la première tentative pour caractériser la variation de la taille du génome chez ces insectes; elle procure des estimations pour plus de 50 espèces et augmente les connaissances de manière à couvrir 15 familles de l'ordre. D'après ces données élargies, on peut déceler quelques patterns intéressants de variation, bien que de façon bien préliminaire. Notre étude suscitera, nous l'espérons, une analyse plus poussée de ce groupe diversifié d'insectes en fournissant le premier inventaire d'importance des tailles des génomes chez les lépidoptères, ainsi que des conseils méthodologiques et des pistes intéressantes de recherche future.[Traduit par la Rédaction]

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 2003

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  • Published since 1929, this monthly journal reports on primary research contributed by respected international scientists in the broad field of zoology, including behaviour, biochemistry and physiology, developmental biology, ecology, genetics, morphology and ultrastructure, parasitology and pathology, and systematics and evolution. It also invites experts to submit review articles on topics of current interest.
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