Biology Faculty Articles

Title

Patterns of Molecular Genetic Variation Among African Elephant Populations

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

12-2002

Publication Title

Molecular Ecology

Keywords

African elephant, Microsatellites, Phylogeography

ISSN

0962-1083

Volume

11

Issue/No.

12

First Page

2489

Last Page

2498

Abstract

The highly threatened African elephants have recently been subdivided into two species, Loxodonta africana (savannah or bush elephant) and L. cyclotis (forest elephant) based on morphological and molecular studies. A molecular genetic assessment of 16 microsatellite loci across 20 populations (189 individuals) affirms species level genetic differentiation and provides robust genotypic assessment of species affiliation. Savannah elephant populations show modest levels of phylogeographic subdivision based on composite microsatellite genotype, an indication of recent population isolation and restricted gene flow between locales. The savannah elephants show significantly lower genetic diversity than forest elephants, probably reflecting a founder effect in the recent history of the savannah species.

Comments

©2002 Blackwell Science Ltd.

Additional Comments

US Fish and Wildlife Service grant #: 1448-98210-98-G145; NIH training grant #: T32 HG0035; GenBank accession #s: AF364123-AF364125

ORCID ID

0000-0001-7353-8301

ResearcherID

N-1726-2015

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