Two species of the monogeneric family Nycteridae were studied for the first time with chromosome banding techniques and chromosome painting. The diploid chromosome number of Nycteris macrotis and N. tragata is 40 and 38, respectively. Both karyotypes differ by a translocation, a telomeric fusion and a pericentric inversion. The genus Nycteris shows a highly derived karyotype where the 25 chiropteran evolutionarily conserved units (ECUs) are represented in 37 segments. Chromosome painting with Myotis probes revealed three common features of Nycteris and Emballonura, which are not present in Taphozous. From a cytogenetic point of view, Nycteris is therefore closer related to Emballonura than to Taphozous. Further, an additional synapomorphy for Vespertilioniformes is described, i.e. the synteny of a segment homologous to human chromosome 13 and ECU12a-22a in elements homologous to Myotis chromosome MMY6.
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Vol. 21 • No. 2