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Validation of microsatellite multiplexes for parentage analysis in a coral reef fish (Lutjanus carponotatus, Lutjanidae)

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Parentage analysis is an important tool for identifying connectivity patterns in coral reef fishes, but often requires numerous highly polymorphic markers. We isolated 21 polymorphic microsatellite markers from the stripey snapper, Lutjanus carponotatus and describe their integration into three multiplex PCRs. All markers were highly polymorphic with a mean of 24.9 ± 1.8 SE alleles per locus and an average observed heterozygosity of 0.797 ± 0.038 SE across 285 genotyped individuals. Using a simulated dataset, we conclude that the complete marker set provides sufficient resolution to resolve parent–offspring relationships in natural populations with 99.6 ± 0.1 % accuracy in parentage assignments. This multiplex assay provides an effective means of investigating larval dispersal and population connectivity in this fishery-targeted coral reef fish species and informing the design of marine protected area networks for biodiversity conservation and fisheries management.

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We are grateful to volunteers who assisted with sample collections. This project was supported by KAUST awards CRG-1-2012-BER-002 and OCRF-SPCF-2011-BER-001, as well as the Australian government’s National Environmental Research Program (NERP), Tropical Ecosystem’s Hub. It formed part of Project 8.3: The significance of no-take marine protected areas to regional recruitment and population persistence on the GBR. Additional support was provided by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and the KAUST Red Sea Research Center.

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Correspondence to Hugo B. Harrison.

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Harrison, H.B., Feldheim, K.A., Jones, G.P. et al. Validation of microsatellite multiplexes for parentage analysis in a coral reef fish (Lutjanus carponotatus, Lutjanidae). Conservation Genet Resour 6, 803–806 (2014).

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