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DNA-based marker for the assessment of genetic population structure in yellow perch
A. Kapuscinski1 and L. Miller1
1 Dept. of Fisheries and Wildlife
University of Minnesota
1980 Folwell Ave.,
St. Paul, MN 55108
We have identified the first genetic markers that resolve significant variation within and among populations of yellow perch in the north-central United States. Eight microsatellite DNA markers each resolved 4-34 alleles in samples from the Milwaukee area of Lake Michigan, Green Bay, and Lake Winnibigoshish, in northern Minnesota. The markers could be roughly grouped according to their levels of variation. Three had high variation (observed heterozygosities, H, ranging from 0.91 - 0.99), four had moderate variation (H = 0.35-0.71), and only one had low variation (H = 0.03). Exact tests indicated significant differentiation in allele frequencies (P < 0.001) among all three populations. Five additional, but smaller, samples were included from populations throughout the region. A UPGMA diagram based on Nei 1978 genetic distance showed population clusters consistent with the geographical locations of the sampling sites. Within Lake Michigan, Green Bay was distinct from three main-body populations. Genetic structure among the main-body populations suggests reproductive isolation by distance. Adding more populations with increased sample sizes will be necessary to draw more definitive conclusions about population structure within Lake Michigan and throughout the region.