DNA barcoding of molluscs (Bivalvia) in selected sites in Capiz, Philippines

ANDREA PEARL D. AREÑO1, LAURA ELYSE J. CAMBEL1, MARIENELLE S. HILAPAD1, ANDREA LUCYLE M. BELA-ONG1,
RAYMOND VINCENT F. CASTILLO2, and MARCOS B. VALDEZ JR.3
1Philippine Science High School – Western Visayas Campus, Brgy. Bito-on, Jaro, Iloilo City 5000, Department of Science and Technology – Science Education Institute, Philippines
2Department of Biology, College of Science, De La Salle University, Malate, Manila 1004, Philippines
3Department of Biological Sciences, Institute of Arts and Sciences, Far Eastern University, Sampaloc, Manila 11000, Philippines



Abstract
Molluscs exhibit complex morphological characteristics and have the same vernacular for the same species which makes species identification difficult. Using morphology as the lone identifier of species populations was found to be problematic. DNA barcoding using the CO1 gene is found to be a useful tool for species identification when traditional taxonomy is ineffective. This study aimed to contribute to the current DNA barcoding data of molluscs in the Philippines and provide identification of commercially available bivalves in Roxas City, Capiz for conservation and diversity assessment. A discordance between morphological and molecular identification was found and nine putative new species were discovered. DNA barcoding can be used for species identification, food safety, conservation management, market surveillance and discovery of putative new species of bivalves in markets in Roxas City, Capiz. In addition, combining morphological and DNA taxonomic analysis can help in conserving and monitoring of commercially-available marine species.


Keywords: DNA barcoding, bivalves, putative, mislabeling, CO1 gene