Francesco Frati

Francesco Frati
Università degli Studi di Siena | UNISI · Department of Evolutionary Biology

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263
Publications
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Publications

Publications (263)
Article
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The samurai wasp Trissolcus japonicus (Ashmead, 1904) is a parasitoid hymenopteran that came into the limelight as the natural enemy of Halyomorpha halys. Here, we present the complete sequence of the mitochondrial genome of the CREATJ laboratory strain, naturally recovered in Italy in 2018. The molecule conforms to the typical model of animal mito...
Article
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Complete mitochondrial genome data are frequently applied to address phylogenetic/phylogeographic issues at different taxonomic levels in ecology and evolution. While sample preparation/sequencing is becoming more and more straightforward thanks to dropping costs for next-generation sequencing (NGS), data preparation and visualization remains a man...
Article
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Collembola are a key component of the soil biota globally, playing an important role in community and ecosystem dynamics. Equally significant are their associated microbiomes, that can contribute to key metabolic functions. In the present study, we investigated the bacterial community composition of four Antarctic springtail species to assess if an...
Article
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Collembola are an ancient and early diverging lineage of basal hexapods that occur in virtually all terrestrial habitats on Earth. Phylogenetic relationships between the different orders of Collembola are fiercely debated. Despite a range of studies and the application of both morphological and genetic approaches (singly or in combination) to asses...
Article
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Springtails and mites are the dominant groups of terrestrial arthropods in Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems. Their Antarctic diversity includes a limited number of species, which are frequently endemic to specific regions within the continent. Advances in molecular techniques, combined with the re-evaluation of morphological characters and the avai...
Article
The use of plastics burgeoned in the last decades to become an essential component of our society. An environment friendly method to dispose of plastic waste is not available yet, to the outcome that these accumulate in landfills or are scattered as microplastics. New researches reported that some coleopteran species are able to destroy plastics th...
Article
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Symphypleona (sensu stricto) are a group of Collembola (=springtails) that, despite displaying some variation in gene order, have been poorly investigated under the phylomitogenomic perspective. How families and subfamilies of this taxon are evolutionary related is still partially unknown. For this reason we sequenced, and herein described, the com...
Article
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The invertebrate terrestrial fauna of Antarctica is being investigated with increasing interest to discover how life interacts with the extreme polar environment and how millions of years of evolution have shaped their biodiversity. Classical taxonomic approaches, complemented by molecular tools, are improving our understanding of the systematic re...
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Collembola (springtails) are an early diverging class of apterygotes, and mark the first substantial radiation of hexapods on land. Despite extensive work, the relationships between major collembolan lineages are still debated and, apart from the Early Devonian fossil Rhyniella praecursor, which demonstrates their antiquity, the time frame of sprin...
Article
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The complete mitochondrial genome of the springtail Bourletiella arvalis (Fitch, 1863) is herein described and applied to a Bayesian phylogenetic analysis, inclusive of all the Collembola mitochondrial DNAs sequenced so far. The gene content and order, as well as the nucleotide composition, conform with the well-known features of hexapods’ mitochon...
Article
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The complete mitochondrial genome of the machilid Trigoniophthalmus alternatus (Silvestri 1904) is herein described and applied to phylogenetic analyses, inclusive of the most early-divergent lineages of hexapods. Both gene content and order generally conform with the organization of the arthropods’ mitochondrial genome. One gene translocation invo...
Article
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Proturans are small, wingless, soil-dwelling arthropods, generally associated with the early diversification of Hexapoda. Their bizarre morphology, together with conflicting results of molecular studies, has nevertheless made their classification ambiguous. Furthermore, their limited dispersal capability (due to the primarily absence of wings) and...
Article
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Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) encodes for proteins mainly involved in the oxidative phosphorylation process, and due to its molecular features, it is one of the most used molecular markers for phylogenetic and taxonomic purposes. Since mitochon-dria are the primary source of energy for aerobic organisms, it has been suggested that modifications of the...
Article
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The growing interest in Antarctic collembolan species has led us to re-evaluate both the morphological and molecular aspects of different species adapted to the extreme Antarctic environment. The genus Folsomotoma includes nine species mainly distributed in Antarctic and subantarctic areas and a few additionally from Australia and South America. We...
Article
The ecological interactions that occur in and with soil are of consequence in many ecosystems on the planet. These interactions provide numerous essential ecosystem services, and the sustainable management of soils has attracted increasing scientific and public attention. Although soil ecology emerged as an independent field of research many decade...
Article
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Stachorutes najtae n. sp. is described from the interstitial sand dunes of central Italy. It has 4 + 4 eyes with a postantennal organ composed of 7-9 simple vesicles and the furcal dens with six chaetae. Stachorutes najtae n. sp. appears closely related to S. gracilis Smolis & Shvejonkova, 2006 from which it can be separated by the different chaeto...
Article
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Three sympatric springtail species, from the South Shetland Islands archipelago in the maritime Antarctic, are analysed here in a common biogeographic and evolutionary framework. This study was designed to compare their population genetic structure using the same molecular marker. Haplotype data for the mitochondrial cox1 gene have been obtained fo...
Article
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Previous work focused on allozymes and mitochondrial haplotypes has detected high levels of genetic variability between Cryptopygus terranovus populations, a springtail species endemic to Antarctica, until recently named Gressittacantha terranova . This study expands these biogeographical surveys using additional analytical techniques, providing a...
Article
Several pathological mutations in the human mitochondrial genome have been characterized based on medical, genetic and biochemical evidence. The observation that the structure and core functions of the mitochondrial genome are conserved from animals to man suggests that the analysis of animal variation may be informative to further characterize, an...
Article
Patterns of environmental spatial structure lie at the heart of the most fundamental and familiar patterns of diversity on Earth. Antarctica contains some of the strongest environmental gradients on the planet and therefore provides an ideal study ground to test hypotheses on the relevance of environmental variability for biodiversity. To answer th...
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This study provides the description of the complete mitochondrial genome of the Antarctic collembola Folsomotoma octooculata. Since mitogenomic data are extensively used for phylogenetic reconstruction, we also provide a phylogenetic reconstruction of the internal relationships of some collembola taxa using the complete mitochondrial DNA data avail...
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The polytene chromosomes of salivary glands in Cansilianura malatestai are analyzed. The study reveals the presence of a diploid number 2n = 8, which is the minimum ever observed in European neanurids. This karyotype is characterized by very long chromosomes with many heterochromatic bands. Some considerations on phylogenetic and evolutionary relat...
Chapter
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A field research was carried out in Metaponto (Southern Italy) to study the potential environmental impact of oilseed Cry1Ac canola and eggplant Cry 3B on arthropod assemblages and to study the relative efficiency of different sampling methods of soil fauna. The most abundant groups sampled by pitfall traps on oilseed canola in spring were Collembo...
Article
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Mitochondria are responsible for the oxidative phosphorylation process. Accordingly, putatively adaptive changes in their genomic features have been variously associated with major eco-physiological shifts in animal evolution, including increased metabolic rates and heat adaptation. Antarctic pycnogonids offer an interesting system to test whether...
Data
Graphical representation of the percentage of A+C (red) and G+T (black) across the whole J-strand. Y-axis values represent nucleotide percentage, calculated within a 100-bp sliding window; x-axis values represent nucleotide positions corresponding to the linearized genome. Below the graphs, position and orientation of each gene.
Article
Eubacterial cellular endoparasites belonging to the genus Wolbachia (Rickettsiales) are extremely widespread symbionts of Arthropoda and Nematoda. Their ability to manipulate the reproductive behavior of the host is of particular importance to the fauna of the deep soil horizon, an environment in which parthenogenesis-inducing symbionts can play a...
Article
All complete or nearly complete mitochondrial genomes of Metazoa (2819) have been subject to bioinformatic analysis to investigate the distribution and features of repeated and palindromic sequences. Repeats are ubiquitous, with 29.9% of genomes containing at least one and 1.95% of total genome length being repeated. Repeat boundaries were tested f...
Article
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The initial part of the ejaculatory duct of Orchesella villosa contains a "valve" and a "sorter" avoiding respectively the reflow and allowing the separation of the secretion for the spermatophore stalk from the sperm fluid. For most of its length, the ejaculatory duct lumen is divided into two parts: in the dorsal part the sperm fluid flows while...
Article
The super-species Salmo trutta is taxonomically divided into a number of semi-species, local varieties, morphs, and possible hybrids due to restocking. Their genetic status is nevertheless not always clear, although relevant for management and conservation practices. We used mitochondrial haplotypes, nuclear microsatellites, and LDH-C1 genotyping t...
Article
The CYP1 gene family, a cornerstone in toxicological processes, has been implicated also in physiological processes. Here we summarize the history and current views of this gene family. CYP1As have long been known to participate in responses to AH receptor agonists and metabolism of carcinogens and other chemicals. CYP1B1 has regulatory and catalyt...
Article
Multiple tools are available to infer time in phylogentic reconstructions and multiple markers/genes are generally used to obtain more solid reconstructions, opening to the issue of which marker performs better in dating. Following the observation that multiple markers, applied to the same group of taxa or even to the same topology, generally produ...
Article
The darkling beetle Pimelia rugulosa rugulosa Germar, 1824 was selected to investigate the process of colonization in a volcanic archipelago and the role of volcanism in determining spatial patterns of genetic variability. Analyses were conducted in the Aeolian Islands, located in the central Mediterranean directly off the Sicilian coast. Genetic v...
Article
The genus Pimelia is represented in Sicily by the two species P. grossa and P. rugulosa, the latter with the two subspecies P. r. rugulosa and P. r. sublaevigata. A third subspecies, P. r. apula, is present only in Puglia. The phylogeographic history of this genus in Sicily was reconstructed using sequences of the complete cox2 gene, applying phylo...
Article
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Mediterranean cetacean odontocetes are exposed to environmental stress, in particular to persistent organic pollutants, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and trace elements. In the present study, the response of "gene-expression biomarkers" was evaluated in Mediterranean striped dolphin (Stenella coeruleoalba) skin biopsies collected in three sampli...
Article
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The application of novel techniques in molecular phylogenetics has opened to the study and critical reevaluation of the phylogenetic relationships among many and different animal groups, including arthropods. Such studies have sometimes produced reconstructions that are in conflict with well supported morphological phylogenies and have seldom lead...
Article
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Friesea grisea is the only springtail species currently described from both East (Victoria Land) and West Antarctica (Antarctic Peninsula), although levels of genetic divergence between the two regions suggest the possibility of cryptic species. Determining the genetic structure of populations in the two regions is necessary in order to compare the...
Article
A gene potentially involved in juvenile hormone (JH) biosynthesis was previously identified in Ceratitis capitata as the putative-farnesoic acid O-methyltransferase (FAMeT). Since JH is involved in insect reproduction, we silenced the putative-FAMeT expression by RNA interference in Ceratitis capitata to evaluate its implication in egg production....
Article
The gall-midge family Cecidomyiidae is one of the largest within the animal kingdom. Its characteristics include, among others, a chromosome elimination during spermiogenesis and a bewildering diversity in sperm ultrastructure. The sperm tail, in particular, is unusual in that it deviates from the conventional 9+2 pattern of microtubules. We descri...
Article
Farnesoic acid O-methyl transferase (FAMeT) is the enzyme involved in the penultimate step of insect juvenile hormone (JH) biosynthesis and is thus a key regulator in insect development and reproduction. We report the characterization of the putative-FAMeT in the medfly or Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata. This gene was identified by sup...
Article
The North-Western Mediterranean basin is well known for its high number of relictual endemic taxa, and has been indicated as one of the world's major biodiversity hotspots at the species level. A possible contributing factor may be long-term persistence of populations and their prolonged stability. This study was designed to investigate the phyloge...
Article
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Collembola are one of the few hexapod groups adapted to live in the harsh environmental conditions of Antarctic terrestrial ecosystems. Diversity is limited to a few species that can be very abundant in coastal deglaciated sites. A remarkable lack of overlap in Collembola species composition is evident between Western and Eastern Antarctica, and Fr...
Article
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Aim: We examined the genetic structure among populations and regions for the springtails Cryptopygus antarcticus antarcticus and Gomphiocephalus hodgsoni (Collembola) to identify potential historical refugia and subsequent colonization routes, and to examine population growth/expansion and relative ages of population divergence. Location Antarctic...
Article
Collembola is a group of soil arthropods whose ecophysiological requirements tend to promote inter-population isolation and genetic differentiation. To test this, we analysed the genetic structure of 22 populations of two species of the genus Allacma (A. fusca and A. gallica), using allozyme electrophoresis. Several loci showed distinct differences...
Article
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In this study, the complete sequence of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) of Atelura formicaria (Hexapoda: Zygentoma) is described. The molecule is 15.205 bp in length and it is the third complete mt genome sequenced from the Zygentoma. The genome organization conforms with the putative ancestral insect gene arrangement. All protein coding genes use st...
Article
The present analyses employ the almost complete sequence of the 28S rRNA gene to investigate phylogenetic relationships among Pancrustacea, placing special emphasis on the position of basal hexapod lineages. This study utilizes a greater number of characters and taxa of Protura, Collembola and Diplura than previous analyses to focus on conflicts in...
Article
Aim We tested whether the distribution of three common springtail species (Gressittacantha terranova, Gomphiocephalus hodgsoni and Friesea grisea) in Victoria Land (Antarctica) could be modelled as a function of latitude, longitude, altitude and distance from the sea.Location Victoria Land, Ross Dependency, Antarctica.Methods Generalized linear mod...
Article
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Besides functioning as chemosensors for a broad range of endogenous and synthetic ligands, transient receptor potential vanilloid (TRPV) 1-4 channels have also been related to capsaicin (TRPV1), pain, and thermal stimuli perception, and itching sensation (TRPV1-4). While the expression of the TRPV1-4 genes has been adequately proved in skin, sensor...
Article
Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) is a key enzyme of the cholinergic nerve system. Of the two forms found in insects, the predominant one is active in the synapses and is the target of organophosphate and carbamate insecticides, while the role of the second is currently unknown. Two acetylcholinesterase cDNAs from the basal hexapod Orchesella villosa hav...
Article
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Mitogenomics data, i.e. complete mitochondrial genome sequences, are popular molecular markers used for phylogenetic, phylogeographic and ecological studies in different animal lineages. Their comparative analysis has been used to shed light on the evolutionary history of given taxa and on the molecular processes that regulate the evolution of the...
Data
List of complete (or almost complete) mtDNA collembolan species included in the analysis of gene-by-gene genetic distances with the corresponding GenBank accession number.