, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 253-262
Date: 20 Apr 2006

Chromosome localization of microsatellite markers in the shrews of the Sorex araneus group

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The extremely high rate of karyotypic evolution that characterizes the shrews of the Sorex araneus group makes this group an exceptionally interesting model for population genetics and evolutionary studies. Here, we attempted to map 46 microsatellite markers at the chromosome arm level using flow-sorted chromosomes from three karyotypically different taxa of the Sorex araneus group (S. granarius and the chromosome races Cordon and Novosibirsk of S. araneus). The most likely localizations were provided for 35 markers, among which 25 were each unambiguously mapped to a single locus on the corresponding chromosomes in the three taxa, covering the three sexual chromosomes (XY1Y2) and nine of the 18 autosomal arms of the S. araneus group. The results provide further evidence for a high degree of conservation in genome organization in the S. araneus group despite the presence of numerous Robertsonian rearrangements. These markers can therefore be used to compare the genetic structure among taxa of the S. araneus group at the chromosome level and to study the role of chromosomal rearrangements in the genetic diversification and speciation process of this group.