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Keywords:

  • Asiatic lion;
  • genetic variation ;
  • microsatellites;
  • Panthera leo persica

Abstract

All cat species, except domestic cats, are either threatened or endangered. The Asiatic lion (Panthera leo persica), a critically endangered species, is driven to a single habitat zone in Gir forests in India for its survival. The present status of this big cat compels us to acquire deeper knowledge of its genetic variability and phylogenetic relationships. Here we report the isolation of highly polymorphic microsatellite loci from a partial genomic library of the Asiatic lion. These loci were characterized and have shown high levels of variation ranging from six to 11 alleles per locus in the population studied.