, Volume 651, Issue 1, pp 199–212 | Cite as

Resolving taxonomic uncertainties using molecular systematics: Salmo dentex and the Balkan trout community

  • Aleš SnojEmail author
  • Branko Glamuzina
  • Andrej Razpet
  • John Zablocki
  • Ivan Bogut
  • Estelle Lerceteau-Köhler
  • Naris Pojskić
  • Simona Sušnik
Primary research paper


The genetic structure of Salmo dentex and its phylogenetic relations to sympatric salmonids in the Neretva and Skadar River basins were evaluated using mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region, eight microsatellites, and somatolactin (SL) gene. In the Neretva River basin of Bosnia–Herzegovina, the results based on mtDNA analysis showed extensive haplotype sharing between S. marmoratus, S. dentex, and S. trutta, and were therefore not conclusive; however, F-statistics and assignment testing based on nuclear DNA markers indicated that S. dentex of the Neretva basin were grouped in a genetically unified cluster with S. marmoratus in the Neretva basin. Using the same analytical approach, S. dentex from the Skadar basin in Montenegro appeared to be genetically distinct from S. marmoratus in the same basin and indistinct from local S. trutta. Molecular data also indicated that S. dentex of the Neretva basin in Bosnia–Herzegovina are not closely related to S. dentex of the Skadar basin in Montenegro. Based on these results, we hypothesize S. dentex to be a particular life history form of S. marmoratus in the Neretva basin and of S. trutta in the Skadar basin. These results clearly demonstrate that S. dentex does not represent a monophyletic lineage and should not be considered a distinct species.


Life history form Phenotypic variation Marble trout Brown trout Neretva river Lake Skadar 



The authors would like to acknowledge G. Holzer and C. Übl for the samples from the Czech hatchery, S. Galić and N. Zovko for their help in obtaining samples in the lower Neretva basin and M. Jušković and D. Mrdak for providing samples from the Skadar basin. Financial support for this study was provided in part by the Slovenian Research Agency and the Croatian Ministry of Science, Education and Sport (Project: 275-0010501-0856).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aleš Snoj
    • 1
    Email author
  • Branko Glamuzina
    • 2
  • Andrej Razpet
    • 1
  • John Zablocki
    • 1
  • Ivan Bogut
    • 3
  • Estelle Lerceteau-Köhler
    • 4
  • Naris Pojskić
    • 5
  • Simona Sušnik
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Animal ScienceUniversity of Ljubljana, Biotechnical FacultyDomžaleSlovenia
  2. 2.Department of AquacultureUniversity of DubrovnikDubrovnikCroatia
  3. 3.Agricultural FacultyUniversity of OsijekOsijekCroatia
  4. 4.Institut für ZoologieKarl-Franzens Universität GrazGrazAustria
  5. 5.Institute for Genetic Engineering and BiotechnologyUniversity of SarajevoSarajevoBosnia-Herzegovina

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