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Genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationships in feral pig populations from Argentina

Abstract

In Argentina, domestic pigs (Sus scrofa Linnaeus 1758) were introduced during the first Buenos Aires foundation, in the year 1536. Their provenance was mainly from the Iberian Peninsula, the Canary Islands and Cape Verde. In 1541 those pigs were released and, consequently, the first feral populations were originated. Thereafter, the species propagated both naturally and through human action, reaching a distribution that covers most of the Argentinian territory. The objective of this study is to genetically characterize the oldest feral pig populations in Argentina, making use of the mitochondrial control region (CR) and the amelogenin gene (AmelY), in order to determine their phylogenetic origin and corroborate its consistency with the historic information. The obtained results indicate that most of the feral pigs in Corrientes and Buenos Aires populations are positioned in the European subclades, El-A and El-C for CR, and HY1 and HY2 for AmelY. Despite this fact, a low frequency of individuals of Asian origin was found in populations from Buenos Aires, whereas none of them disclosed African ancestry. Furthermore, given that a large proportion of feral pigs found in the species’ original sites in Argentina have European ancestry, we can partially corroborate the historical records.

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Acosta, D.B., Figueroa, C.E., Fernández, G.P. et al. Genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationships in feral pig populations from Argentina. Mamm Biol 99, 27–36 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mambio.2019.09.013

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Keywords

  • Feral pig
  • Argentina
  • Control region
  • Amelogenin gene
  • Phylogenetic