Whole-genome analysis across 10 songbird families within Sylvioidea reveals a novel autosome-sex chromosome fusion

Hanna Sigeman, Suvi Ponnikas, Bengt Hansson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (SciVal)

Abstract

Sex chromosomes in birds have long been considered to be extremely stable. However, this notion has lately been challenged by findings of independent autosome-sex chromosome fusions within songbirds, several of which occur within a single clade, the superfamily Sylvioidea. To understand what ecological and evolutionary processes drive changes in sex chromosome systems, we need complete descriptions of sex chromosome diversity across taxonomic groups. Here, we characterize the sex chromosome systems across Sylvioidea using whole-genome data of species representatives of 10 different families, including two published and eight new genomes. We describe a novel fusion in the family Cisticolidae (represented by Cisticola juncidis) involving a part of chromosome 4. We also confirm the previously identified fusion between chromosome Z and a part of chromosome 4A in all 10 families and show that fusions involving parts of chromosomes 3 and 5 are not found outside the families where they were first discovered (Alaudidae and Panuridae). These findings add to the complexity of the sex chromosome system in Sylvioidea, where four independent autosome-sex chromosome fusions have now been identified.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBiology letters
Volume16
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Keywords

  • autosome–sex chromosome fusion
  • birds
  • genomics
  • sex chromosome
  • Sylvioidea

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