High genetic diversity within the morphologically conservative dwarf loach, Kichulchoia brevifasciata (Teleostei: Cobitidae), an endangered freshwater fish from South Korea Academic Article uri icon


  • The dwarf loach, Kichulchoia brevifasciata, is a primary freshwater fish endemic to South Korea (Republic of Korea). Due to its limited geographic range, special habitat requirements, and scarcity, this species has been considered one of the most endangered cobitid loaches in the world. Gene tree and species tree reconstruction derived from mitochondrial and nuclear sequence data supports the exclusivity of K. brevifasciata and the existence of two highly distinct genetic lineages (eastern and western lineages). Intraspecific genetic variation based on the corrected genetic distance ranged from 0.0013 to 0.0017 (cytochrome b) and 0-0.0012 (nuclear loci) within each lineage and 0.0349 (cytochrome b) and 0.0037-0.0104 (nuclear loci) between the lineages. Although morphologically homogeneous, eastern and western lineages were estimated to have diverged roughly 2.79 million years ago (4.25-1.42, 95 % HPD). Future conservation efforts for K. brevifasciata should consider these genetically distinct lineages as separate evolutionary entities and adopt conservation efforts accordingly. 2013 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 0.75

author list (cited authors)

  • Kim, D., Conway, K. W., Jeon, H., Kwon, Y., & Won, Y.

citation count

  • 8

complete list of authors

  • Kim, Daemin||Conway, Kevin W||Jeon, Hyung-Bae||Kwon, Ye-Seul||Won, Yong-Jin

publication date

  • August 2013