Chromosome Painting Shows That Pygathrix nemaeus Has the Most Basal Karyotype Among Asian Colobinae

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We mapped the chromosomal homology of Pygathrix namaeus (douc) with human and other primates by in situ hybridization of human chromosome paints. The synteny of 3 human chromosomes (1, 2, 19) is fragmented in the douc karyotype and the 23 human probes (autosomes plus X) provided 26 signals. There are associations between human chromosomes 14/15, 21/22, and 1/19. Human chromosomes 1 and 19 are divided in two segments and associated on douc chromosomes 8 and 10. The fragmentation and association of human chromosomes 1 and 19 is best explained as the result of a reciprocal translocation, which occurs in all documented Asian colobines studied, but not in the African species Colobus guereza. However, the homologs to douc chromosome 10 in all other Asian documented colobines show an additional pericentric inversion. Our results indicate that Pygathrix nemeus is karyologically the most conservative colobine species yet studied and that this species probably diverged early after the separation of Asian and African Colobinae. The data reinforce the monophyly of the Colobinae and their division into an African and an Asian clade.

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