Dept. of Fisheries, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Guilan, P.O. Box 1144, Sowmehsara, Iran.
International Sturgeon Research Institute, P.O. Box 41635-3464, Rasht, Iran.
The Persian sturgeon, Acipenser persicus (Borodin, 1897), is an economically important species, which mainly inhabits the Caspian Sea. However, little is known about its population genetic structure. In this study, variation in nucleotide sequences of the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region of wild stock Persian sturgeon was determined to assess the genetic diversity among different natural populations of this species. The fish (n = 46) were collected from four sites (Astara, Sefidrood, Noshahr and Bandare- Turkaman) in the south Caspian Sea. As a result 6 haplotypes and 44 variable sites were found. The average haplotype diversity (h) and nucleotide diversity (?) were 0.640?0.028 and 0.0442?0.011, respectively. Analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) demonstrated that most variations occurred within samples, and the difference between the populations from Astara and Noshahr or Bandare- Turkaman was not significant (p <0.001). Estimates of gene flow indicated reproductive isolation between the Sefidrood River population and the other collections. The divergence might be related to geographical isolation. The results are consistent with the findings from PCR-RFLP analysis (PCR-RFLP) and suggest considerable genetic diversity of the population from Sefidrood River.
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