Genetic analyses using DNA sequences of nuclear ribosomal DNA ITS1 were conducted to determine the extent of genetic variation within and among Longidorus and Xiphinema species. DNA sequences were obtained from samples collected from Arkansas, California and Australia as well as 4 Xiphinema DNA sequences from GenBank. The sequences of the ITS1 region including the 3' end of the 18S rDNA gene and the 5' end of the 5.8S rDNA gene ranged from 1020 bp to 1244 bp for the 9 Longidorus species, and from 870 bp to 1354 bp for the 7 Xiphinema species. Nucleotide frequencies were: A = 25.5%, C = 21.0%, G = 26.4%, and T = 27.1%. Genetic variation between the two genera had a maximum divergence of 38.6% between X. chambersi and L. crassus. Genetic variation among Xiphinema species ranged from 3.8% between X. diversicaudatum and X. bakeri to 29.9% between X. chambersi and X. italiae. Within Longidorus, genetic variation ranged from 8.9% between L. crassus and L. grandis to 32.4% between L. fragilis and L. diadecturus. Intraspecific genetic variation in X. americanum sensu lato ranged from 0.3% to 1.9%, while genetic variation in L. diadecturus had 0.8% and L. biformis ranged from 0.6% to 10.9%. Identical sequences were obtained between the two populations of L. grandis, and between the two populations of X. bakeri. Phylogenetic analyses based on the ITS1 DNA sequence data were conducted on each genus separately using both maximum parsimony and maximum likelihood analysis. Among the Longidorus taxa, 4 subgroups are supported: L. grandis, L. crassus, and L. elongatus are in one cluster; L. biformis and L. paralongicaudatus are in a second cluster; L. fragilis and L. breviannulatus are in a third cluster; and L. diadecturus is in a fourth cluster. Among the Xiphinema taxa, 3 subgroups are supported: X. americanum with X. chambersi, X. bakeri with X. diversicaudatum, and X. italiae and X. vuittenezi forming a sister group with X. index. The relationships observed in this study correspond to previous genera and species defined by morphology.
Keywords: DNA sequencing; ITS1; Longidorus; Xiphinema; molecular phylogenetics.