A diagnostic tool for efficient analysis of the population structure, hybridization and conservation status of European whitefish (Coregonus lavaretus (L.)) and vendace (C. albula (L.))
Praebel, Kim; Westgaard, Jon-Ivar; Amundsen, Per-Arne; Siwertsson, Anna; Knudsen, Rune; Kahilainen, Kimmo K.; Fevolden, Svein-Erik
Coregonids constitute one of the most diverse fish families in the northern freshwater systems and several species are highly endangered mainly due to anthropogenic pressure. Cost effective and powerful polymerase chain reaction (PCR) microsatellite multiplex assays were established for genetic studies of the population structure, hybridization and conservation status of European whitefish (Coregonus lavaretus (L.)) and vendace (C. albula (L.)). An assay containing four PCR multiplexes for co-amplification of 9, 5, 3, and 4 loci was developed for C. lavaretus. Cross-species amplification and rearrangement of the same loci resulted in an assay containing three multiplex reactions of 6, 3, and 4 loci for C. albula. Highly significant pair-wise FST - estimates were obtained between C. albula from L. Vaggatem (Norway) and L. Palojärvi (Finland) (FST = 0. 301, p < 0. 001), between c. lavaretus from l. skrukkebukta (norway) and l. stuorajavri (norway) (fst = 0. 161, p < 0.001), and between morphpairs occurring in the two latter lakes (fst = 0.0135-0.043, p < 0.001). the multiplex assays provided a 100% correct assignment success for discriminating C. lavaretus and C. albula and hence provide a powerful diagnostic tool for the future management of these species.