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Genome sequencing and conservation genomics in the Scandinavian wolverine population
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Evolutionary Biology.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2222-1966
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Evolutionary Biology.
Swedish Univ Agr Sci, Dept Ecol, Grimso Wildlife Res Stn, Riddarhyttan, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-1405-7561
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Evolutionary Biology.
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2018 (English)In: Conservation Biology, ISSN 0888-8892, E-ISSN 1523-1739, Vol. 32, no 6, p. 1301-1312Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Genetic approaches have proved valuable to the study and conservation of endangered populations, especially for monitoring programs, and there is potential for further developments in this direction by extending analyses to the genomic level. We assembled the genome of the wolverine (Gulo gulo), a mustelid that in Scandinavia has recently recovered from a significant population decline, and obtained a 2.42 Gb draft sequence representing >85% of the genome and including >21,000 protein-coding genes. We then performed whole-genome resequencing of 10 Scandinavian wolverines for population genomic and demographic analyses. Genetic diversity was among the lowest detected in a red-listed population (mean genome-wide nucleotide diversity of 0.05%). Results of the demographic analyses indicated a long-term decline of the effective population size (N-e) from 10,000 well before the last glaciation to N-e appeared even lower. The genome-wide F-IS level was 0.089 (possibly signaling inbreeding), but this effect was not observed when analyzing a set of highly variable SNP markers, illustrating that such markers can give a biased picture of the overall character of genetic diversity. We found significant population structure, which has implications for population connectivity and conservation. We used an integrated microfluidic circuit chip technology to develop an SNP-array consisting of 96 highly informative markers that, together with a multiplex pre-amplification step, was successfully applied to low-quality DNA from scat samples. Our findings will inform management, conservation, and genetic monitoring of wolverines and serve as a genomic roadmap that can be applied to other endangered species. The approach used here can be generally utilized in other systems, but we acknowledge the trade-off between investing in genomic resources and direct conservation actions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
WILEY , 2018. Vol. 32, no 6, p. 1301-1312
Keywords [en]
genome assembly, non-invasive sampling, population genetics, single nucleotide polymorphisms
National Category
Genetics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-387248DOI: 10.1111/cobi.13157ISI: 000449856900008PubMedID: 29935028OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-387248DiVA, id: diva2:1331951
Funder
Swedish Research CouncilSwedish Research CouncilKnut and Alice Wallenberg FoundationAvailable from: 2019-06-27 Created: 2019-06-27 Last updated: 2019-06-27Bibliographically approved

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