Molecular documentation of polyembryony and the micro-spatial dispersion of clonal sibships in the nine-banded armadillo, dasypus novemcinctus

Paulo A. Prodohl, W. J. Loughry, Colleen M. Loughry, William S. Nelson, John C. Avise*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

A battery of allelic markers at highly polymorphic microsatellite loci was developed and employed to confirm, genetically, the clonal nature of sibships in nine-banded armadillos. This phenomenon of consistent polyembryony, otherwise nearly unknown among the vertebrates, was capitalized upon to describe the micro-spatial distributions of numerous clonal sibships in a natural population of armadillos. Adult clone mates were significantly more dispersed than were juvenile sibs, suggesting limited opportunities for altruistic behavioural interactions among mature individuals. These results, and considerations of armadillo natural history, suggest that evolutionary explanations for polyembryony in this species may not reside in the kinds of ecological and kin selection theories relevant to some of the polyembryonic invertebrates. Rather, polyembryony in armadillos may be associated evolutionarily with other reproductive peculiarities of the species, including delayed uterine implantation of a single egg.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMolecular Ecology and Evolution
Subtitle of host publicationThe Organismal Side: Selected Writings from the Avise Laboratory
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing
Pages119-125
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9789814317764
ISBN (Print)9814317756, 9789814317757
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Jan 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)

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    Prodohl, P. A., Loughry, W. J., Loughry, C. M., Nelson, W. S., & Avise, J. C. (2010). Molecular documentation of polyembryony and the micro-spatial dispersion of clonal sibships in the nine-banded armadillo, dasypus novemcinctus. In Molecular Ecology and Evolution: The Organismal Side: Selected Writings from the Avise Laboratory (pp. 119-125). World Scientific Publishing . https://doi.org/10.1142/9789814317764_0002