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Genetic structure and kinship relationships in black lion tamarin (Leontopithecus chrysopygus) through by microsatellite markers

Grant number: 18/19577-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2019
Effective date (End): December 31, 2020
Field of knowledge:Biological Sciences - Genetics - Animal Genetics
Principal Investigator:Patrícia Domingues de Freitas
Grantee:Nathalia Bulhões Javarotti
Host Institution: Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde (CCBS). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


Ex-situ reproduction and conservation programs have been established for endangered species with the objective of maintaining self-sustaining and demographically stable populations capable of retaining genetic diversity and avoiding inbreeding depression. However, despite the success of many of these programs, maintaining a species in captivity faces major challenges. The low number of individuals that originate the founding group and the reproduction between related individuals can promote genetic diversity loss and inbreeding depression in the captive populations. Aiming to resolve some of these issues, conservation programs have been combined with traditional analyses based on Studbook records with genetic-molecular approaches. In such a strategy, genetic structure and diversity levels, as well as the kinship degree, can be estimated by molecular markers and then compared to and genealogical data. In addition, predictive analyses based on genotypes of potential parental can be performed to simulate more heterozygous progenies. This information can be also used for an integrated in-situ and ex-situ management, which may facilitate actions for translocations or creation of priority conservation areas, besides introductions of captive animals into nature if necessary. In this context, the present work aims to characterize the genetic structure of the wild and captive groups of the black lion tamarin, (Leontopithecus chrysopygus), an endangered primate from the Brazilian Atlantic Forest, by microsatellite markers and Studbook data. We intend to investigate aspects related to kinship relationships, inbreeding and genetic diversity and differentiation as well as to infer about the social structure of the species and its reproductive behavior in nature and captivity. The data produced here will be available in the next version of the Studbook of the black lion tamarin to be eventually used for the management and conservation plans of the species.

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