Research Article

Genetic variability in maned wolf based on heterologous short-tandem repeat markers from domestic dog

Published: June 20, 2007
Genet. Mol. Res. 6 (2) : 348-357

Abstract

The maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) is the largest South American canid. Habitat loss and fragmentation, due to agricultural expansion and predatory hunting, are the main threats to this species. It is included in the official list of threatened wildlife species in Brazil, and is also protected by IUCN and CITES. Highly variable genetic markers such as microsatellites have the potential to resolve genetic relationships at all levels of the population structure (among individuals, demes or metapopulations) and also to identify the evolutionary unit for strategies for the conservation of the species. Tests were carried out to verify whether a class of highly polymorphic tetranucleotide repeats described for the domestic dog effectively amplifies DNA in the maned wolf. All five loci studied were amplified; however, one of these, was shown to be monomorphic in 69 maned wolf samples. The average allele number and estimated heterozygosity per polymorphic locus were 4.3 and 67%, respectively. The genetic variability found for this species, which is considered threatened with extinction, showed similar results when compared to studies of other canids.

The maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus) is the largest South American canid. Habitat loss and fragmentation, due to agricultural expansion and predatory hunting, are the main threats to this species. It is included in the official list of threatened wildlife species in Brazil, and is also protected by IUCN and CITES. Highly variable genetic markers such as microsatellites have the potential to resolve genetic relationships at all levels of the population structure (among individuals, demes or metapopulations) and also to identify the evolutionary unit for strategies for the conservation of the species. Tests were carried out to verify whether a class of highly polymorphic tetranucleotide repeats described for the domestic dog effectively amplifies DNA in the maned wolf. All five loci studied were amplified; however, one of these, was shown to be monomorphic in 69 maned wolf samples. The average allele number and estimated heterozygosity per polymorphic locus were 4.3 and 67%, respectively. The genetic variability found for this species, which is considered threatened with extinction, showed similar results when compared to studies of other canids.

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