, Volume 11, Issue 8, pp 735-740

Comparative chromosome painting defines the karyotypic relationships among the domestic dog, Chinese raccoon dog and Japanese raccoon dog

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The Chinese raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides procyonoides, 2n=54+2–3 B) and Japanese raccoon dog (Nyctereutes p. viverrinus, 2n=38+3–4 B) are two subspecies of the same species. The genome-wide comparative chromosome map between the Japanese raccoon dog and domestic dog (Canis familiaris) has been established by fluorescence in-situ hybridization with a set of domestic dog painting probes. In this study, we established the comparative chromosome map for the Chinese raccoon dog and domestic dog. In total, dog probes specific for the 38 autosomes delineated 41 conserved chromosomal segments in the Chinese raccoon dog. Probes from dog chromosomes 1, 13 and 19 each painted two Chinese raccoon dog chromosome segments. Fifteen dog autosomal probes each hybridized to one Chinese raccoon dog chromosome, while each of the other dog autosomal probes painted to a single Chinese raccoon dog chromosomal arm. Dog X chromosome probe delineated the entire X chromosome of the Chinese raccoon dog; the dog Y chromosome probe hybridized to the pseudoautosomal region at the Xpter as well as the entire Y chromosome of the Chinese raccoon dog. Comparative analysis of the distribution patterns of conserved segments defined by dog paints in the genomes of the Chinese and Japanese raccoon dogs demonstrates that their differences in the karyotypes of these two subspecies could have resulted from eight Robertsonian translocations. The large difference in chromosome number between the Chinese and Japanese raccoon dogs suggests that they should be considered as two distinct species.

This revised version was published online in July 2006 with corrections to the Cover Date.