Forensic validation of a panel of 12 SNPs for identification of Mongolian wolf and dog

Hong Hui Jiang, Bo Li, Yue Ma, Su Ying Bai, Thomas D. Dahmer, Adrian Linacre, Yan Chun Xu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Wolf (Canis lupus) is a species included in appendices of CITES and is often encountered in cases of alleged poaching and trafficking of their products. When such crimes are suspected, those involved may attempt to evade legal action by claiming that the animals involved are domestic dogs (C. l. familiaris). To respond effectively to such claims, law enforcement agencies require reliable and robust methods to distinguish wolves from dogs. Reported molecular genetic methods are either unreliable (mitogenome sequence based), or operationally cumbersome and require much DNA (un-multiplexed microsatellites), or financially expensive (genome wide SNP genotyping). We report on the validation of a panel of 12 ancestral informative single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers for discriminating wolves from dogs. A SNaPshot multiplex genotyping system was developed for the panel, and 97 Mongolian wolves (C. l. chanco) and 108 domestic dogs were used for validation. Results showed this panel had high genotyping success (0.991), reproducibility (1.00) and origin assignment accuracy (0.97 ± 0.05 for dogs and 1.00 ± 0.03 for wolves). Species-specificity testing suggested strong tolerance to DNA contamination across species, except for Canidae. The minimum DNA required for reliable genotyping was 6.25 pg/μl. The method and established gene frequency database are available to support identification of wolves and dogs by law enforcement agencies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13249
Number of pages12
JournalScientific Reports
Volume10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Aug 2020

Bibliographical note

Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

Keywords

  • Mongolian wolf
  • dog
  • Canis lupus
  • C. l. familiaris
  • single nucleotide polymorphism
  • genotyping

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