Peer-reviewed articles

Present-Day Genetic Structure of Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar) in Icelandic Rivers and Ice-Cap Retreat Models

Authors: Olafsson, K., Pampoulie, C., Hjorleifsdottir, S., Gudjonsson, S., Hreggvidsson, GO

Version: PlosOne

Publication year: 2014


Due to an improved understanding of past climatological conditions, it has now become possible to study the potential concordance between former climatological models and present-day genetic structure. Genetic variability was assessed in 26 samples from different rivers of Atlantic salmon in Iceland (total of 2,352 individuals), using 15 microsatellite loci. F-statistics revealed significant differences between the majority of the populations that were sampled. Bayesian cluster analyzes using both prior information and no prior information on sampling location revealed the presence of two distinguishable genetic pools - namely, the Northern (Group 1) and Southern (Group 2) regions of Iceland. Furthermore, the random permutation of different allele sizes among allelic states revealed a significant mutational component to the genetic differentiation at four microsatellite loci (SsaD144, Ssa171, SSsp2201 and SsaF3), and supported the proposition of a historical origin behind the observed variation. The estimated time of divergence, using two different ABC methods, suggested that the observed genetic pattern originated from between the Last Glacial Maximum to the Younger Dryas, which serves as additional evidence of the relative immaturity of Icelandic fish populations, on account of the re- colonization of this young environment following the Last Glacial Maximum. Additional analyzes suggested the presence of several genetic entities which were likely to originate from the original groups detected.

Link to article