Microsatellite evolution in mice (Apodemus): Origin of alleles, multiple paternity, and mutation rate at Chernobyl



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Texas Tech University


The studies of fauna at Chemobyl are very complex. They involve obtaining permits to the restricted zone, intensive field work with exposure to radiation, precise cataloging of skins and tissues in the museum, laboratory molecular biology work and sophisticated data analysis. This requires a collaborative effort. Several papers were outlined as a function of my dissertation. Their status and correspondence to the chapters of the dissertation are outlined in Table 1.1. The author line reflects the complexity of work at Chernobyl and the need to have both field and laboratory analyses.

The choice of mice of the genus Apodemus was dictated by their abundance in both control and zone locations (Baker et al. 1996). In addition, Apodemus is closely related to Mus and Rattus: all three genera belong to the same subfamily (Murinae). The original idea was to test microsatellite primer pairs that were shown to successfully amplify both Mus and Rattus DNA on DNA from Apodemus. Four primer pairs specific to both Mus and Rattus microsatellites in genes encoding tumor necrosis factor, nerve growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor II and c-myc oncogene (Moore ef al. 1991) were used for amplification of Apodemus DNA. Consistently clean amplification products could not be obtained. This is in agreement with Kondo etal. (1993), who used Rattus microsatellite primers to amplify mouse Mus DNA and vice versa. Less than 10% of primer pairs they tested amplified DNA from the other species and gave polymorphic PCR products. Thus, I was faced with the challenge of developing microsatellites specifically for Apodemus.



Genetic markers, Chernobyl Nuclear Accident, Chornobylʹ, Ukraine, 1986 -- Environmental aspects, Microsatellites (Genetics), Mice -- Genetics, Radioactive pollution -- Environmental aspects, Apodemus -- Effect of radiation on -- Case studies