Marine Biotechnology

, Volume 8, Issue 6, pp 672–685 | Cite as

Microsatellite Analysis of Japanese Sea Cucumber, Stichopus (Apostichopus) japonicus, Supports Reproductive Isolation in Color Variants

  • Manami Kanno
  • Yoshihisa Suyama
  • Qi Li
  • Akihiro KijimaEmail author
Original Article


The genetic relationship among the three color variants (Red, Green, and Black) of the Japanese sea cucumber, S. japonicus, was investigated using 11 microsatellite markers. Genetic differentiation testing among the three sympatric color types showed the strong heterogeneity of Red (p < 0.001), while no significant difference was observed between Green and Black (p = 0.301 to 0.961). UPGMA trees constructed from 10 sample lots from 5 localities showed two distinct clusters, one from the Red types and the other from the Green and Black types. In addition, the sympatric Green and Black formed one subcluster with strong bootstrap support at each locality. These results indicate the separate species status of Red and the other color types, and also support the population identity of sympatric Green and Black.


Color variation genetic difference Holothuroidea microsatellite sea cucumber Stichopus japonicus 



The authors thank Professor Hiroyuki Munehara of Hokkaido University, Dr. Yoshinobu Kosaka of Aomori Prefectural Aquaculture Research Center, and Mr. Yoshihiro Yamamoto of Oita Institute of Marine and Fisheries Science for collecting samples. This study was supported in part by the Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (No. 13460080) from the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Manami Kanno
    • 1
  • Yoshihisa Suyama
    • 2
  • Qi Li
    • 3
  • Akihiro Kijima
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Laboratory of Integrative Aquatic Biology, Graduate School of Agriculture ScienceTohoku UniversityOnagawaJapan
  2. 2.Laboratory of Forest Ecology, Graduate School of Agriculture ScienceTohoku UniversityNarukoJapan
  3. 3.Fisheries CollegeOcean University of ChinaQingdaoChina

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