Amphora Ehrenberg ex Kützing sensu lato is a common and widespread benthic diatom genus with a taxonomy that has been under continual revision, particularly based on molecular analyses. Although Amphora species have been studied using modern microscopy in recent years, there has not been much progress on molecular characterization of the species, especially in Asia. In this study of Amphora, sampling was carried out from September 2009 to August 2010 in Korean coastal waters. The morphological and molecular characteristics of eight Amphora sensu lato were examined: Amphora marina, A. proteus, Halamphora costata, H. coffeaeformis, H. eunotia, H. holsatica, H. terroris, and Halamphora sp. Based on previous accounts, morphology suggested that A. marina and A. proteus belong to the subgenus Amphora Cleve, which have smooth girdle bands and rather coarse and very distinct areolae on the valve. The other species, H. coffeaeformis, H. costata, H. eunotia, H. holsatica, H. terroris, and Halamphora sp. belong to the subgenus Halamphora Cleve, which was recently elevated to generic status by Levkov 2009, have plicate girdle bands, puncta which do not form straight longitudinal lines, valves which have a narrow ventral portion and apices that are generally rostrate-capitate and recurved. In agreement with analysis based on morphological characteristics, phylogenetic analysis based on small subunit rDNA suggested that the eight Amphora sensu lato species were not a monophyletic group as the morphological classification. Also, the results of molecular work and statistical analysis on all these Amphora sensu lato combined with phylogenic analysis on our geographically representative samples give strong evidence that Halamphora Levkov is independent of Amphora Cleve. Furthermore, in this study, Amphora terroris was transferred Halamphora as Halamphora terroris (Ehrenberg) Wang comb. nov. and Amphora marina was recorded for the first time in Korea.
- Molecular phylogeny
- Nuclear DNA