The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

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pdf 04. Major patterns of population differentiation in the Iberian Schreiber's green lizard (Lacerta schreiberi) inferred from protein polymorphism

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Open Access

pp.35-42

Authors: Raquel Godinho, Octávio S. Paulo, Nuno Ferrand, Cristina Luis, Humberto D. Rosa And Eduardo G. Crespo

Abstract: The genetic characteristics of the Iberian Schreiber's green lizard (Lacerta schreiberi) remain largely unknown. We investigated the population structure of this species using conventional electrophoresis and isoelectric focusing to screen 24 protein loci from 11 representative populations of the Iberian Peninsula. Thirteen polymorphic loci displaying a total of 30 alleles revealed significant partitioning of genetic variation among populations (FST =0.448). Analysis of standard genetic variability measures and allelic distribution profiles indicated that the most variable populations are located in the main distribution area of the species: the north-western corner of the Iberian Peninsula and the Spanish Central System. In contrast, southern isolated populations showed depleted levels of genetic diversity, indicating that severe restrictions to gene flow together with small population sizes are promoting genetic uniformity. We suggest that present-day patterns of genetic diversity in L. schreiberi populations are concordant with the biogeographical hypothesis of a recent expansion to the south followed by a history of contraction and fragmentation resulting in today's isolated southern populations.

Keywords: electrophoresis, isoelectric focusing, Lacertidae, population genetics

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