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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

An evaluation of introgression of Atlantic coast striped bass mitochondrial DNA in a Gulf of Mexico population using formalin-preserved museum collections.

Striped bass Morone saxatilis populations in drainages along the Gulf of Mexico coast (Gulf) were depleted in the 1950s and 1960s, probably because of anthropogenic influences. It is believed that only the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (A-C-F) river system continually supported a naturally reproducing population of Gulf lineage. Striped bass juveniles of Atlantic coast (Atlantic) ancestry were introduced to restore population abundances in the A-C-F from the late 1960s to the mid 1970s and in many other Gulf rivers from the 1960s to the present. We previously identified mtDNA polymorphisms that were unique to approximately 60% of striped bass from the A-C-F and which confirmed the continued successful natural reproduction of striped bass of Gulf maternal ancestry within the system. However, the genetic relatedness of the extant A-C-F population to 'pure' Gulf striped bass was not addressed. In this study, we determined the frequency of a diagnostic mtDNA XbaI polymorphism in samples of 'pure' Gulf striped bass that were collected from the A-C-F prior to the introduction of Atlantic fish, that were obtained from museum collections, and that were originally preserved in formalin. PCR primers were developed that allowed for amplification of a 191-bp mtDNA fragment that contained the diagnostic XbaI restriction site. Using RFLP and direct sequence analyses of the PCR amplicons, we found no significant differences in mtDNA XbaI genotype frequencies between the archived samples and extant A-C-F samples collected over a 15-year period. This indicates that significant maternally mediated introgression of Atlantic mtDNA genomes into the A-C-F gene pool has not occurred. Additionally, we found no evidence of the unique Gulf mtDNA genotype in striped bass from extant populations in Texas, Louisiana and the Mississippi River. These results highlight the importance of the A-C-F as a repository of striped bass to restore extirpated Gulf populations and the potential use of museum collections in retrospective population studies.[1]


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