Journal of Applied Genetics

, Volume 56, Issue 3, pp 375–380 | Cite as

First results on the genetic diversity of the invasive signal crayfish Pacifastacus leniusculus (Dana, 1852) in Europe using novel microsatellite loci

  • E. FroufeEmail author
  • S. Varandas
  • A. Teixeira
  • R. Sousa
  • L. Filipová
  • A. Petrusek
  • L. Edsman
  • M. Lopes-Lima
Animal Genetics • Short Communication


The introduction of non-native crayfish in aquatic ecosystems is very common due to human activities (e.g. aquaculture, recreational and commercial fisheries). The signal crayfish, Pacifastacus leniusculus (Dana, 1852), is one of the most widespread invasive species in Europe. Although several important ecological and economic impacts of this species have been reported, its European population genetic characterisation has never been undertaken using nuclear markers. Thus, the aim of this study was to develop and characterise new microsatellite markers for signal crayfish that can be useful in future studies in its invaded range, since only five are available so far. In total, 93 individuals from four geographically distinct European populations (Portugal, Great Britain, Finland and Sweden) were scored for the new markers and for those previously described, with the Bayesian analysis revealing a clear distinction among populations. These markers are suitable for future studies of the population genetic structure of this important invasive species, by increasing information about the possible pathways of introduction and dispersal, and by giving insights about the most important vectors of introduction.


Invasion genetics Microsatellites Alien crayfish Introduction pathways Population differentiation 



Financial support was provided by the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) project PTDC/AAC-AMB/117688/2010. LF was supported by Office National de l’Eau et des Milieux Aquatiques (ONEMA), AP by the Czech Science Foundation (project no. P505/12/0545) and LE by the Swedish Research Council FORMAS and SwAM. We would like to thank Stephanie Peay for collecting the UK samples and to Susana Lopes for the help with fragment analysis.


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Copyright information

© Institute of Plant Genetics, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poznan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Froufe
    • 1
    Email author
  • S. Varandas
    • 2
  • A. Teixeira
    • 3
  • R. Sousa
    • 1
    • 4
  • L. Filipová
    • 5
    • 6
  • A. Petrusek
    • 5
  • L. Edsman
    • 7
  • M. Lopes-Lima
    • 1
  1. 1.CIIMAR/CIMAR—Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental ResearchUniversity of PortoPortoPortugal
  2. 2.CITAB-UTAD—Forestry Department, Centre for Research and Technology of Agro-Environment and Biological SciencesUniversity of Trás-os-Montes and Alto DouroVila RealPortugal
  3. 3.CIMO-ESA-IPB Mountain Research Centre, School of AgriculturePolytechnic Institute of BragançaBragançaPortugal
  4. 4.CBMA—Centre of Molecular and Environmental Biology, Department of BiologyUniversity of MinhoBragaPortugal
  5. 5.Department of Ecology, Faculty of ScienceCharles University in PraguePragueCzech Republic
  6. 6.Laboratoire Ecologie et Biologie des InteractionsUniversité de PoitiersPoitiersFrance
  7. 7.Institute of Freshwater Research, Department of Aquatic ResourcesSwedish University of Agricultural SciencesDrottningholmSweden

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