Genome duplication was long been reported by our laboratory in Brazilian anurans belonging to the Leptodactylidae and Hylidae families. Thanks to other investigators, several polyploid species with related diploid forms were also found in diverse regions of South America, Africa and Australia. Our cytogenetic, enzymatic and molecular experiments performed in the Brazilian polyploids showed a higher level of variability resulting from tetrasomic gene expression according to the binomial equation (p + q)4. These results were supported by the classical Ohno’s theory of vertebrate evolution via genome duplication. Later, we suggested that the epigenetic mutations could have a role in the expansion of the tetraploid animals exploring different regions. Here, we provide an overview of the data on polyploid anurans in light of the speciation process. Some biogeographic events of Mesozoic and Cenozoic Eras probably related to anurans evolution were also focused.
Part of the book: Reptiles and Amphibians