Conservation Genetics

, Volume 13, Issue 3, pp 885–889 | Cite as

Identification of endangered Alabama lampmussel (Lampsilis virescens) specimens collected in the Emory river, Tennessee, USA via DNA barcoding

Short Communication


The federally endangered Alabama lampmussel (Lampsilis virescens) has been presumed extirpated in the Emory river, TN for almost four decades. In the fall of 2011, three specimens that were morphologically identified as L. virescens (based on external shell morphology) were collected from the Emory river. The significance of such a find led biologists to take a noninvasive tissue sample from each individual for genetic confirmation. Approximately 400 nucleotides of the mtDNA COI gene were sequenced for each individual along with two samples of L. virescens from the Paint Rock river. DNA sequence data was also obtained from Genbank for other Lampsilis sp. Maximum parsimony and Bayesian phylogenetic methods revealed strong support for a clade consisting of putative Emory river L. virescens and known L. virescens (Paint Rock river origin) that was sister to all other taxa. These results indicated that the individuals collected from the Emory river were indeed L. virescens.


Freshwater mussel Lampsilis virescens Mitochondrial DNA Taxonomic identification 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. (outside the USA) 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.US Fish and Wildlife Service, Warm Springs Fish Technology CenterConservation Genetics LaboratoryWarm SpringsUSA
  2. 2.Department of BiologyUniversity of FloridaGainesvilleUSA

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