Main Article Content

RAPD-PCR molecular analysis of the threatened Cabrera’s vole populations in the Iberian Peninsula

Samer Alasaad
Konstantin V Rozhkovan
Dmitry M. Atopkin
Antonio Sánchez
José Garrido-García
Ismael Romero
Ramón C. Soriguer
Galina N. Chelomina


Optimal management and conservation programs of the threatened Cabrera’s vole require investigating potential molecular genetic markers in the genomic background, if the few remaining fragile populations are to be conserved. A collection of 30 Cabrera’s vole representing four populations in Spain and Portugal was characterized by 134 RAPD-PCR markers. Molecular analyses did not detect low level of the genetic diversity or population bottlenecks in all studied populations, in discordance with the expectation of low level of viability of the Cabrera’s vole. The results described Cabrera’s vole populations as a single genetic unit with slightly restricted gene flow. Phylogenetic reconstruction suggested genetic differentiation between Northern and Southern Cabrera’s vole populations, with the basal branches formed by the southern populations, which may be an evidence of the southern origin of Iberian vole ancestral population. To our knowledge, this is the first study on the genetic diversity of Microtus cabrerae, which may have further application for the conservation programs of this threatened species of Iberian vole.

Keywords: Microtus cabrerae, RAPD-PCR, Spain, Portugal, gene flow, genetic diversity, bottleneck, conservation

African Journal of Biotechnology Vol. 12(26), pp. 4065-4073