Isolation and characterization of microsatellite loci from the apple maggot fly Rhagoletis pomonella (Diptera: Tephritidae)


Sebastian Velez, ‡Present address: Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge MA, 02138, USA. Fax: 617-496-5949; E-mail:


We report the isolation and development of 81 novel primers for amplifying microsatellite loci in the Rhagoletis pomonella sibling species complex, and the sequencing, characterization and analysis of basic population genetic parameters for nine of these genes. We also report the successful cross-species amplification of several of these loci. The R. pomonella sibling species complex is a textbook example of genetic differentiation in sympatry via host-plant shifting. Microsatellite markers can be useful for mapping host-plant-associated adaptations in Rhagoletis that generate reproductive isolation and facilitate speciation, as well as for resolving the genetic structure and evolutionary history of fly populations.