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Int J Mol Sci. 2012;13(9):10750-64. doi: 10.3390/ijms130910750. Epub 2012 Aug 28.

Application of novel polymorphic microsatellite loci identified in the Korean Pacific Abalone (Haliotis diversicolor supertexta (Haliotidae)) in the genetic characterization of wild and released populations.

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Biotechnology Research Division, National Fisheries Research and Development Institute, Busan 619-705, Korea; E-Mail:


The small abalone, Haliotis diversicolor supertexta, of the family Haliotidae, is one of the most important species of marine shellfish in eastern Asia. Over the past few decades, this species has drastically declined in Korea. Thus, hatchery-bred seeds have been released into natural coastal areas to compensate for the reduced fishery resources. However, information on the genetic background of the small abalone is scarce. In this study, 20 polymorphic microsatellite DNA markers were identified using next-generation sequencing techniques and used to compare allelic variation between wild and released abalone populations in Korea. Using high-throughput genomic sequencing, a total of 1516 (2.26%; average length of 385 bp) reads containing simple sequence repeats were obtained from 86,011 raw reads. Among the 99 loci screened, 28 amplified successfully, and 20 were polymorphic. When comparing allelic variation between wild and released abalone populations, a total of 243 different alleles were observed, with 18.7 alleles per locus. High genetic diversity (mean heterozygosity = 0.81; mean allelic number = 15.5) was observed in both populations. A statistical analysis of the fixation index (F(ST)) and analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) indicated limited genetic differences between the two populations (F(ST) = 0.002, p > 0.05). Although no significant reductions in the genetic diversity were found in the released population compared with the wild population (p > 0.05), the genetic diversity parameters revealed that the seeds released for stock abundance had a different genetic composition. These differences are likely a result of hatchery selection and inbreeding. Additionally, all the primer pair sets were effectively amplified in another congeneric species, H. diversicolor diversicolor, indicating that these primers are useful for both abalone species. These microsatellite loci may be valuable for future aquaculture and population genetic studies aimed at developing conservation and management plans for these two abalone species.


Haliotis diversicolor diversicolor; Haliotis diversicolor supertexta; Pacific abalone; genetic diversity; microsatellite loci; next-generation sequencing

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