Wednesday, January 6, 2016

DNA Barcodes and Nomenclature

The purpose of this application, under Article 75.6 of the Code, is to conserve the universal usage of Tipula contaminata Linnaeus, 1758 by setting aside all previous type fixations and designating a neotype. Tipula contaminata is the type species of the genus Ptychoptera Meigen, 1803, itself the type genus of the family PTYCHOPTERIDAE Osten Sacken, 1862. This species is found over much of Europe, and all authors subsequent to Meigen (1803) have utilized his concept of the species. However, the holotype of Tipula contaminata Linnaeus, 1758 represents a species of TIPULIDAE. It is proposed that a neotype be designated for Tipula contaminata to preserve two hundred years of common usage and ensure nomenclatural stability at the genus and family rank.
IUZN Case 3664

A recently published comment on the above case by Gunnar Kvifte used almost exclusively DNA Barcoding information to strengthen the application. Gunnar and I agree that this is most likely the first time a DNA barcode data set is used as the main argument for or against a nomenclatoral proposal in the International Commission of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN). The comment is brief and to the point and uses publicly available data on BOLD as evidence. 

The colleagues show that all their Ptychoptera contaminata sequences form a distinct cluster separate from all other species providing further evidence that it is a valid species well delimited from other species of Ptychoptera in the Palearctic region. Case closed :-)

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