Submitted to: Conservation Genetics
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/20/2006
Publication Date: 12/1/2006
Citation: Rexroad III, C.E., Vallejo, R.L., Coulibaly, I., Couch, C., Garber, A., Westerman, M., Sullivan, C. 2006. Identification and characterization of microsatellites for striped bass from repeat-enriched libraries. Conservation Genetics 7(6) 971-982. Interpretive Summary: Employing molecular genetic technologies in selective breeding programs aimed at the genetic improvement for aquaculture production efficiency requires the development of species-specific resources. Although several publications have described genetic markers for use in population genetic studies, the total number of genetic markers available for striped bass is not sufficient to generate a genome map and identify genes affecting aquaculture production traits. We developed 345 new genetic markers for striped bass and characterized a subset of those markers for use in conservation and breeding applications.
Technical Abstract: Striped bass (Morone saxatilis) is economically important in the U.S. due to its value as an aquaculture species and in supporting commercial and recreational fisheries, especially those off the Atlantic coast and in the Gulf of Mexico. Modern strategies for managing fishery populations and aquaculture broodstocks employ the use of molecular genetic markers to identify individuals, assign parentage, and characterize population genetic structure and levels of inbreeding and migration. Several studies have utilized molecular genetic markers to characterize wild populations and migration patterns of this anadromous fish. Recently, efforts to develop genetic maps for aquaculture species have required the development of significantly larger numbers of genetic markers than are needed for population genetic analyses. These maps have been generated to identify loci associated with positive traits for use in marker assisted selection schemes. As part of a collaborative effort to employ molecular genetic technologies in striped bass breeding programs we generated microsatellite markers for use in population genetic studies, broodstock selection and management strategies, and the construction of a genetic map. Use of several marker systems has revealed limited molecular genetic variation in wild populations of striped bass, therefore molecular markers for this species require significant initial characterization prior to utilization in applications of conservation genetics or breeding. Although microsatellites are generally highly polymorphic and excellent for use in such applications, microsatellite marker development requires significant resources as compared to other markers systems. To increase our efficiency of microsatellite marker development, we utilized repeat-enriched libraries to develop 345 new microsatellite markers for striped bass. A subset of these markers (n=71) was characterized by genotyping samples from two striped bass broodstock populations in order to evaluate marker polymorphism, percent heterozygosity, Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium, linkage disequilibrium and utility for population genetic studies