DNA-based technologies have been increasingly used in species determination of forensically important sarcophagids, as they are often not morphologically distinct, especially for the immature specimens. The mitochondrial genome has been broadly used for species-level identifications. Although Chinese sarcophagid sequences of short fragments (200–600 bp) had been deposited in GenBank, the barcode region and the complete cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) and COII sequences are still unavailable. In this study, 78 sarcophagid fly specimens, representing 17 Chinese sarcophagid species, were collected from 29 locations in 18 Chinese provinces. Sequence data of the mitochondrial COI and COII of the most important Chinese flesh fly taxa associated with cadavers were presented for first time, which serve as reference standards for Chinese species determination. Phylogenetic analysis showed that the COI and COII sequences were useful for identifying most sarcophagid species. The results of this research will be conductive for implementation of the Chinese Sarcophagidae in forensic entomology. However, the application of mitochondrial DNA as species identifier requires great circumspection and additional markers and methods should be studied to ensure accuracy of identification in the future.
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Vol. 52 • No. 6