Genome Biology and Evolution 14(6) , evac089 ( 2022)
The bivalve families Teredinidae and Xylophagaidae include voracious consumers of wood in shallow and deep-water marine environments, respectively. The taxa are sister clades whose members consume wood as food with the aid of intracellular cellulolytic endosymbionts housed in their gills. This combination of adaptations is found in no other group of animals and was likely present in the common ancestor of both families. Despite these commonalities, the two families have followed dramatically different evolutionary paths with respect to anatomy, life history and distribution. Here we present 42 new mitochondrial genome sequences from Teredinidae and Xylophagaidae and show that distinct trajectories have also occurred in the evolution and organization of their mitochondrial genomes. Teredinidae display significantly greater rates of amino acid substitution but absolute conservation of protein-coding gene order, whereas Xylophagaidae display significantly less amino acid change but have undergone numerous and diverse changes in genome organization since their divergence from a common ancestor. As with many bivalves, these mitochondrial genomes encode two ribosomal RNAs, 12 protein coding genes, and 22 tRNAs; atp8 was not detected. We further show that their phylogeny, as inferred from amino acid sequences of 12 concatenated mitochondrial protein-coding genes, is largely congruent with those inferred from their nuclear genomes based on 18S and 28S ribosomal RNA sequences. Our results provide a robust phylogenetic framework to explore the tempo and mode of mitochondrial genome evolution and offer directions for future phylogenetic and taxonomic studies of wood-boring bivalves.