Systematic study of the closely related hemiurid genera Mitrostoma, Neopisthadena and Opisthadena revealed that Opisthadena cortesi is a junior synonym of Opisthadena dimidia and Opisthadena fujianensis and Opisthadena marina are species inquirendae. Phylogenetic analysis of the 7 recognized species, based on 21 transformation series derived from comparative morphologic characters, produced a single tree with a consistency index of 0.735. The five species of the genus Opisthadena constitute a monophyletic clade and Neopisthadena habei is their sister group. Mitrostoma nototheniae is the sister group of the other 6 members of the clade. Geographic distribution suggests an ancient circum-Pacific distribution of the group. The association between kyphosids and this group of hemiurids appeared with the ancestor of Neopisthadena and Opisthadena.
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