Development of twenty-three novel microsatellite markers for the seagrass, Zostera muelleri from Australia
- 209 Downloads
Seagrasses are one of the most productive and economically important habitats in the coastal zone, but they are disappearing at an alarming rate, with more than half the world’s seagrass area lost since the 1990s. They now face serious threat from climate change, and there is much current speculation over whether they will survive the coming decades. The future of seagrasses depends on their ability to recover and adapt to environmental change—i.e. their ‘resilience’. Key to this, is understanding the role that genetic diversity plays in the resilience of this highly clonal group of species. To investigate population structure, genetic diversity, mating system (sexual versus asexual reproduction) and patterns of connectivity, we isolated and characterised 23 microsatellite loci using next generation sequencing for the Australian seagrass species, Zostera muelleri (syn. Z. capricorni), which is regarded as a globally significant congeneric species. Loci were tested for levels of variation based on eight individuals sampled from Lake Macquarie, New South Wales, Australia. We detected high to moderate levels of genetic variation across most loci with a mean allelic richness of 3.64 and unbiased expected hetrozygosity of 0.562. We found no evidence for linkage disequilibrium between any loci and only three loci (ZosNSW25, ZosNSW2, and ZosNSW47) showed significant deviations from Hardy–Weinberg expectations. All individuals displayed a unique multi-locus genotype and the combined probability of identity across all loci was low (P ID = 1.87 × 10−12) indicating a high level of power in detecting unique genotypes. These 23 markers will provide an important tool for future population genetic assessments in this important keystone species.
KeywordsSeagrass Dispersal Genetic structure Mating system Gene flow Sexual Asexual Clonal Recruitment Life history Zostera capricorni
We would like to thank A. Miller and A. Fitch for technical assistance. This work was support by funding provided by the Paddy Palin Foundation and Humane Society International to PM, and funding from the Centre for Integrative Ecology, Deakin University to CS.
- Costanza R, dArge R, deGroot R, Farber S, Grasso M, Hannon B, Limburg K, Naeem S, O’Neill RV, Paruelo J, Raskin JG, Sutton P, van den Belt M (1997) The value of the world’s ecosystem services and natural capital. Nature 387:253–260Google Scholar
- Jacobs SWL, Les DH (2009) New combinations in Zostera (Zosteraceae). Telopea 12:419–423Google Scholar
- Jacobs SWL, Les DH, Moody ML (2006) New combinations in Australasian Zostera (Zosteraceae). Telopea 11:127–128Google Scholar
- Les DH, Moody ML, Jacobs SWL, Bayer RJ (2002) Systematics of seagrasses (Zosteraceae) in Australia and New Zealand. Syst Bot 27:468–484Google Scholar
- Raymond M, Rousset F (1995) Genepop (version-1.2)—Population-genetics software for exact tests and ecumenicism. J Hered 86:248–249Google Scholar
- Rozen S, Skaletsky HJ (2000) Primer3 on the WWW for general users and for biologist programmers. In: Krawetz S, Misener S (eds) Bioinformatics methods and protocols: methods in molecular biology. Humana Press, Totowa, NJ, pp 365–386Google Scholar
- Waits LP, Luikart G, Taberlet P (2001) Estimating the probability of identity among genotypes in natural populations: cautions and guidelines. Mol Ecol 10:249–256Google Scholar
- Waycott M, Duarte CM, Carruthers TJB, Orth RJ, Dennison WC, Olyarnik S, Calladine A, Fourqurean JW, Heck KL, Hughes AR, Kendrick GA, Kenworthy WJ, Short FT, Williams SL (2009) Accelerating loss of seagrasses across the globe threatens coastal ecosystems. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 106:12377–12381PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar