Phylogenetic Relationships of Macaques (Cercopithecidae: Macaca) Inferred from Partial Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) Cytochrome Oxidase II (COII) gene

  • Noor Aisyah Rahim
  • Millawati Gani
  • Mohd Tajuddin Abdullah
Keywords: mitochondrial DNA, cytochrome oxidase II gene, macaques, phylogenetic


The molecular phylogenetic relationships among ten species of macaques were assessed using mitochondrial
DNA (mtDNA) cytochrome oxidase II (COII) gene. The 27 individuals comprising of ten species within genus
Macaca, namely, M. sylvanus, M. mulatta, M. cyclopis, M. arctoides, M. fascicularis, M. assamensis, M.
thibetana, M. nemestrina, M. leonina and M. silenus were used in this study. The phylogenetic trees were
reconstructed using neighbor-joining (NJ), maximum parsimony (MP) and maximum likelihood (ML) methods.
Based on our constructed tree, it is suggested that the results from phylogenetic analyses demonstrated four
groups of macaques. In addition, the trees showed topology of M. sylvanus as a sister clade to all Asian
macaques. The silenus group, which diverged first after M. sylvanus formed their own clade, consisted of
macaque species M. silenus, M. nemestrina and M. leonina. Meanwhile, the sinica group consisted of M.
assamensis and M. thibetana, and the fascicularis group comprised of M. fascicularis, M. arctoides, M. mulatta
and M. cyclopis. Our ML tree also showed that M. arctoides is a member of fascicularis group. Our study, also
indicated that our results neglect the classification based on outer appearances and supports the proposed
molecular work view.