A phylogenetic approach to understand the evolution of reproduction in coleoid cephalopods

Christian M. Ibáñez, Mariana Díaz-Santana-Iturrios, David A. López-Córdova, Sergio A. Carrasco, M. Cecilia Pardo-Gandarillas, Francisco Rocha, Erica A.G. Vidal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


A central question in the evolution of life-histories is whether organisms reproduce once or repeatedly. For cephalopods, the main differences between semelparous and iteroparous are based on ovulation pattern and spawning type. The different reproductive strategies in coleoid cephalopods could be related to the habitat in which the species dwell (coastal vs. oceanic) and/or to environmental forces, thus, both aspects should be quantitatively evaluated under an evolutionary perspective to reconstruct: (a) the ancestral ovulation type of coleoid cephalopods, and (b) the potential of correlated evolution between ovulation type versus habitat and environment. Ancestral states of ovulation type were estimated using stochastic mapping based on literature data (i.e. synchronous or asynchronous), and this information was combined with a new molecular phylogeny including 165 species. The evolutionary correlation between ovulation type, habitat, and environment was estimated by means of the Markov model comparing the rates of gain and loss. The estimates of ancestral states of ovulation type for coleoid cephalopods resulted in a high probability that Octopodiformes evolved from synchronous ovulation type, and Decapodiformes from asynchronous ovulation type. The three traits evaluated presented phylogenetic signal, although no correlation was found between habitat and ovulation type. Overall, species in stable environments showed a tendency towards synchronous ovulation type, while the asynchronous ovulation pattern was found more frequently in species that live in unstable environments, being this last trait also responsible for triggering the change of ovulation type in some species throughout evolution.

Original languageEnglish
Article number106972
JournalMolecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020


  • Ancestral states
  • Cephalopoda
  • Correlated evolution
  • Environment
  • Habitat
  • Phylogeny
  • Reproduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


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