Understanding the mechanisms that underlie chromosome evolution could provide insights into the processes underpinning the origin, persistence and evolutionary tempo of lineages. Here, we present the first database of chromosome counts for animals (the Animal Chromosome Count database, ACC) summarizing chromosome numbers for ~15,000 species. We found remarkable a similarity in the distribution of chromosome counts between animals and flowering plants. Nevertheless, the similarity in the distribution of chromosome numbers between animals and plants is likely to be explained by different drivers. For instance, we found that while animals and flowering plants exhibit similar frequencies of speciation-related changes in chromosome number, plant speciation is more often related to changes in ploidy. By leveraging the largest data set of chromosome counts for animals, we describe a previously undocumented pattern across the Tree of Life—animals and flowering plants show remarkably similar distributions of haploid chromosome numbers.
- chromosome counts
- diploid numbers
- haploid numbers
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics