Open Access Honors Program Thesis
James Demastes, Honors Thesis Advisor, Biology
Phylogeography, Thomomydoecus, mitochondrial DNA
No broad study has been conducted to examine the genetics of Thomomydoecus species and their patterns of geographic variation. Chewing lice and their parasite-host relationships with pocket gophers have been studied as a key example of cophylogeny (Demastes et al., 2012). Despite this, genetic data on interspecific and intraspecific variation in Thomomydoecus is unexplored, and prior studies consisted within the narrow frame of one complex or species and its relative host gopher. This project collected, and analyzed genetic data, then generated phylogenetic trees. Many of the existing relationships between Thomomydoecus species was confirmed, and there were a number of unexpected findings, and the dispersal of Thomomydoecus louse species is one that diversifies based on an isolating geographic landscape, rather than gopher host species. This will have future use in studies comparing phylogeography and genetic variation of Thomomydoecus to that seen in species of Thomomys pocket gophers.
Year of Submission
Department of Biology
University Honors Designation
A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the designation University Honors
1 PDF file (20 pages)
©2020 Clarissa Elizabeth Bruns
Bruns, Clarissa Elizabeth, "Genetic variation within a broadly distributed chewing louse genus (Thomomydoecus)" (2020). Honors Program Theses. 433.