In the cloning and sequencing of growth-promoting genes of the blacklip abalone, Haliotis rubra (Leach, 1814), two DNA variable number of tandem repeats (VNTRs) were identified in abalone cDNA libraries. One contained a 33 bp repeat unit (5'-CCCAAGGTCCCCAAGGTCAGGGAGGCGAAGGCT-3') located in the 3' untranslated region of a putative growth hormone (GH) gene, and the repeat was designated as GHR. The other contained an 18 bp repeat unit (5'-ACCCGGCGCTTATTAGAG-3') located in the 3' untranslated region of a putative molluscan insulin-related peptides (MIP) gene, and was designated as MIPR. Primers flanking the two VNTR repeat regions were derived from sequence information. One hundred blacklip abalones were collected along the Victorian coastline and used in a preliminary population study. The range of GHR alleles containing the 33 bp basic unit repeat motif included 7 to 20 repeats, with allele GHR 8 not being identified. The most frequent alleles contained GHR 16 and 17 repeats (56.0% and 16.5%, respectively). Four types of alleles were identified in MIPR, viz 4, 5, 6 and 7 repeats. The alleles containing 6 and 5 repeats were the most frequent (50.0% and 41.5%, respectively). Overall, the results indicate that these two DNA minisatellites have use in abalone studies, including paternity resting, triploid testing, population genetic structure, and gene flow.
- Blacklip abalone
- Minisatellite DNA