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Creating genetic profiles of individual hamsters, cricetus cricetus, in order to verify the genetic variety of the local population

Piatkowska, Barbara
Professionele bachelor in de agro- en biotechnologie

Abstract :
Western Europe’s populations of wild hamster, Cricetus cricetus, declined significantly in the last decades resulting in the loss of genetic diversity. There are many different ways allowing preservation of the endangered species such as bringing back their natural habitats, planting crops that can provide nutrition and shelter or reintroduction. The last method requires captive breeding and releasing into the wilds animals that have potential to replenish gene pools. To verify if the genetic diversity of the target population was improved genetic monitoring must be applied. Using molecular biology techniques it is possible to make precise statements about the characteristics of populations. Certain molecular markers are necessary to use those techniques. For example, microsatellites are such markers. They are non-coding DNA fragments, that consist of short repetitive fragments. Microsatellites come in different alleles. Those different alleles can be distinguished from one another by the length variations. The populations, in which there is high amount of individuals possessing the same alleles, are usually inbred. In those populations homozygosity prevails. Thus basing on the heterozygosity of the population, the inbreeding coefficient can be calculated and the genetic diversity of the population can be established. Those methods were successfully employed by Senckenberg institute for biodiversity. The main goal of this project was to implement the genetic monitoring of hamsters using the methodology of the Senckenberg institute(Reiners et al., 2012). The success of this implementation was verified using 10 reference samples provided by Senckenberg institute that have been genotyped before. Firstly the DNA from reference samples was extracted using NucleoSpin® Tissue kit. Then PCR was conducted with use of the QIAGEN® Multiplex PCR kit and the primers compatible with certain microsatellites of the wild hamster. To make the reactions more efficient the primers were grouped in panels in a manner that enabled future recognition of the final products. Thus four Multiplex PCR were conducted, one for each panel. Primers were labeled with fluorescent dye to enable the genetic analysis. The presence of the amplified DNA was checked first on agarose gel. Afterwards the samples were sent for the genetical analysis. Due to the coronavirus situation, the results arrived with delay. By the time of this report only three loci of one reference sample were analyzed. One of them exhibited comparable amount of base pairs as in the Senckenberg institute research, however the other two varied. The method used in the Senckenberg institute could be successfully applied, however, further studies must be conducted to verify the rest of the prepared samples.

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If you want to cite this thesis in your own thesis, paper, or report, use this format (APA):

Piatkowska, B. (2020). Creating genetic profiles of individual hamsters, cricetus cricetus, in order to verify the genetic variety of the local population. Unpublished thesis, Hogeschool PXL, PXL-Green & Tech.
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