Habitat loss caused by the reduction of Arctic ice threatens polar bear (Ursus maritimus) populations. To aid in polar bear conservation, we used stringent marker design criteria with next generation shotgun sequencing to design primers for 19 novel polymorphic microsatellite loci. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 2 to 7, and the average observed heterozygosity across all loci was HO = 0.67. No linkage disequilibrium was detected between loci and only one locus deviated from Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium. Since genetic studies of wildlife species often rely on non-invasive fecal sampling, the microsatellite markers were designed to amplify short regions (<200 bp) to maximize the potential genotyping success when using low quality DNA. These novel markers will be useful for population and conservation genetic studies of polar bear populations.
- Next generation shotgun pyrosequencing
- Non-invasive methods
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics