We report the first molecular evolutionary analysis of the family Camelidae by analysing the full DNA sequence of the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene. Estimates for the time of divergence of the Old World (Camelini) and New World (Lamini) tribes obtained from sequence data are in agreement with those derived from the fossil record. The DNA sequence data were also used to test current hypotheses concerning the ancestors of the domesticated llama and alpaca. The results show that hybridization has occurred in the ancestry of both domesticated camelids, obscuring the origin of the domestic species.
Proceedings of the Royal Society of London Series B
- Pub Date:
- April 1994