Information on genetic relationship of phenotypically divergent sub-groups would be useful for better identification, utilization and management of species. Recent study revealed phenotypic divergence in a reservoir population of Clarias gariepinus. Genetic variability of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) products of the phenotypic divergent sub-groups was investigated in this study. Polymorphism and genetic variability were investigated in electrophoresed random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD)-PCR products of blood samples of twenty (20) C. gariepinus individuals. The population comprised of five (5) individuals of the non-peses phenotypic sub-group- individuals that did not possess anteriorly serrated pectoral spines denoted by S and fifteen (15) individuals of peses sub-groups that possessed anteriorly serrated pectoral spines denoted as C. Standard protocols were followed in analyzing six screened RAPD primers per individuals DNA fragment. Produced bands of pheno-grams were scored and analyzed to establish polymorphism as well as within and between sub-populations allelic variability using unweighted paired group method of algorithms (UPGMA) and dendrograms cluster analysis. Genotype data of individuals in the groups were tested for canonically significant discriminant grouping using discriminant function analysis (DFA). Results reveal that the primers were polymorphic: 746 bands were obtained from 63 detected loci which gave 80.95% polymorphism. Polymorphic information content (PIC) ranged between 0.18 and 0.49. Percentage polymorphic band were 78.00 and 69.84% for peses and non peses sub-groups, respectively. Dendrogram separated the population to two groups. All peses individuals were in one cluster while all the non-peses individuals were on the second cluster. Within group variations were also observed: DFA revealed that 100% of original phenotypically grouped cases were correctly classified. It was concluded that RAPD primers are suitable genetic markers for establishing variability in C. gariepinussub-populations; the pectoral spine phenotypic groups are genetic variants and are potential varieties for the species. The results would have wide application in identification, utilization and management of genetic resources of C. gariepinus.
Key words: Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) marker, morphologic and genetic variability, Clarias gariepinus.
Abbreviations: RAPD-DNA, Random amplified polymorphic deoxyribonucleic acid-polymerase chain reaction; PIC, polymorphic information content; RMS, rotational mating selection.
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