Isolation and characterization of nine polymorphic microsatellite markers for the deep-sea shrimp Nematocarcinus lanceopes (Crustacea: Decapoda: Caridea)
© Dambach et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2013
Received: 3 December 2012
Accepted: 27 February 2013
Published: 1 March 2013
The shrimp Nematocarcinus lanceopes Bate, 1888 is found in the deep sea around Antarctica and sub-Antarctic islands. Previous studies on mitochondrial data and species distribution models provided evidence for a homogenous circum-Antarctic population of N. lanceopes. However, to analyze the fine-scale population genetic structure and to examine influences of abiotic environmental conditions on population composition and genetic diversity, a set of fast evolving nuclear microsatellite markers is required.
We report the isolation and characterization of nine polymorphic microsatellite markers from the Antarctic deep-sea shrimp species Nematocarcinus lanceopes (Crustacea: Decapoda: Caridea). Microsatellite markers were screened in 55 individuals from different locations around the Antarctic continent. All markers were polymorphic with 9 to 25 alleles per locus. The observed heterozygosity ranged from 0.545 to 0.927 and the expected heterozygosity from 0.549 to 0.934.
The reported markers provide a novel tool to study genetic structure and diversity in Nematocarcinus lanceopes populations in the Southern Ocean and monitor effects of ongoing climate change in the region on the populations inhabiting these.
The shrimp Nematocarcinus lanceopes Bate, 1888  is well-known from the deep sea around Antarctica, the sub-Antarctic islands and the adjacent deep-sea basins of the Southern Ocean . It has a wide vertical distribution from the Antarctic continental slope down to the Southern Ocean abyssal plains at depths of 4,000 m . Previous work using mitochondrial and nuclear sequence data provided clear evidence for a single homogeneous circum-Antarctic N. lanceopes population . These findings were also supported by species distribution modeling data, showing a large connected habitat around the Antarctic continent and the sub-Antarctic islands . Currently, the Antarctic continent faces in some areas dramatic and most rapid effects of climate change, e.g. atmosphere and ocean warming at the Antarctic Peninsula and in part the sub-Antarctic regions . However, other regions appear quite stable, e.g. eastern Antarctica and the surrounding deep-sea basins [6, 7]. The increase in temperature leads to strong declines in winter sea ice extent in the Southern Atlantic and is regarded as a likely cause for the observed dramatic population decline in Antarctic krill populations (see ). The decline of this ecological key species has severe impacts on other animals in the Southern Ocean ecosystem that rely on this food source . The consequences of this drastically changing environment on most, in particular benthic deep-sea organisms, are largely unknown and difficult to assess by direct observations. However, the expected responses of species and communities to climate change are critically important for conservation plans and therefore analyses of population processes such as gene flow, local adaptation and loss of genetic diversity are of particular interest (see the Convention on the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources). The reported microsatellite markers allow monitoring the genetic composition of populations, and identifying declines in genetic diversity. Further they enable the identification of genotypes with selective advantages in regions with increased warming or higher rates of primary production .
Characteristics of nine polymorphic microsatellite loci for Nematocarcinus lanceopes tested on 55 individuals
Oligonucleotide primer sequence 5' → 3'
Fragment length (bp)
The reported set of polymorphic microsatellite loci from Nematocarcinus lanceopes will help to analyze the fine-scale genetic structure around the Antarctic continent. These results will help us to test, whether there is regional differentiation that we have not yet detected relying on a single mitochondrial marker only , whether gene flow is maintained primarily by the Antarctic Circumpolar Current, whether populations in regions under severe climate change (e.g., the West Antarctica) experience population declines or possibly growth, and whether patterns of local adaptations can be detected in the different regions. The markers will also allow monitoring the effects of the rapid climate change on the population genetic structure of this species.
We thank the German Research Foundation (DFG RA-1688-2 within the priority program 1158) for funding this study; Oliver Niehuis for helpful comments on the manuscript and Bernhard Misof for a D.E.A.L. FL and CM were supported by DFG Grant MA-3684/2 within the priority program 1158. Finally, we also thank the editor and two anonymous reviewers for constructive comments on the manuscript.
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