These authors contributed equally to this work.
Universal COI primers for DNA barcoding amphibians
Article first published online: 7 DEC 2011
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Molecular Ecology Resources
Volume 12, Issue 2, pages 247–258, March 2012
How to Cite
CHE, J., CHEN, H.-M., YANG, J.-X., JIN, J.-Q., JIANG, K., YUAN, Z.-Y., MURPHY, R. W. and ZHANG, Y.-P. (2012), Universal COI primers for DNA barcoding amphibians. Molecular Ecology Resources, 12: 247–258. doi: 10.1111/j.1755-0998.2011.03090.x
- Issue published online: 7 FEB 2012
- Article first published online: 7 DEC 2011
- Received 28 July 2011; revision received 6 October 2011; accepted 10 October 2011
DNA barcoding is a proven tool for the rapid and unambiguous identification of species, which is essential for many activities including the vouchering tissue samples in the genome 10K initiative, genealogical reconstructions, forensics and biodiversity surveys, among many other applications. A large-scale effort is underway to barcode all amphibian species using the universally sequenced DNA region, a partial fragment of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I COI. This fragment is desirable because it appears to be superior to 16S for barcoding, at least for some groups of salamanders. The barcoding of amphibians is essential in part because many species are now endangered. Unfortunately, existing primers for COI often fail to achieve this goal. Herein, we report two new pairs of primers (➀, ➁) that in combination serve to universally amplify and sequence all three orders of Chinese amphibians as represented by 36 genera. This taxonomic diversity, which includes caecilians, salamanders and frogs, suggests that the new primer pairs will universally amplify COI for the vast majority species of amphibians.