Elucidating the evolution of Phlebotominae is important not only to revise their taxonomy, but also to help understand the origin of the genus Leishmania and its relationship with humans. Our study is a phenetic portrayal of this history based on the genetic relationships among some New Word and Old Word taxa. We used both multilocus enzyme electrophoresis and morphometry on 24 male specimens of the Old Word genus Phlebotomus (with three of its subgenera: Phlebotomus, Spelaeophlebotomus and Australophlebotomus), and on 67 male specimens of the three New World genera, Warileya, Brumptomyia and Lutzomyia, (with three subgenera of Lutzomyia: Lutzomyia, Oligodontomyia and Psychodopygus). Phenetic trees derived from both techniques were similar, but disclosed relationships that disagree with the present classification of sand flies. The need for a true evolutionary approach is stressed.
- Multilocus enzyme electrophoresis
- Old world new world sand flies