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Keywords:

  • bonobos;
  • excremental DNA;
  • microsatellites

Abstract

We show that nuclear DNA extracted from faeces of free living bonobos (Pan paniscus) can be used to amplify hypervariable simple sequence repeats, which can be used for paternity analysis and kinship studies. Of 130 DNA extractions of samples from 33 different animals, about two-thirds yielded PCR products at the first attempt. For several samples only a second extraction resulted in positive amplifications. Consistency tests revealed that in some cases only one of the two alleles was amplified. Presumably this is due to a very limited amount of bonobo DNA in the sample and we suggest therefore that a sample found to be homozygous at a given locus should be typed repeatedly for verification.