We have analysed 136 newly identified human Y-chromosomal microsatellites in five (sub)species of nonhuman primates. We identified 83 male-specific loci for central chimpanzees, 82 for western chimpanzees, 67 for gorillas, 45 for orangutans and 19 loci for mandrills. Polymorphism was detected at 56 loci in central chimpanzees, 29 in western chimpanzees, 24 in western gorillas, 17 in orangutans and at three in mandrills. Success in male-specific amplification of human Y-chromosomal microsatellites in nonhuman primates was significantly negatively correlated with divergence time from the human lineage. We observed significantly more Y-chromosomal microsatellite diversity in central chimpanzees than in western chimpanzees. There were significantly more male-specific loci with longer alleles in humans than with longer alleles in the nonhuman primates; however, this significant difference disappeared when only the loci which are polymorphic in nonhuman primates were analysed, suggesting that ascertainment bias is responsible. This study provides primatologists with a large number of polymorphic, male-specific microsatellite markers that will be valuable for investigating relevant questions in behavioural ecology such as male reproductive strategies, kin-based cooperation among males and male-specific dispersal patterns in wild groups of nonhuman primates.

Great apes, Microsatellite evolution, Microsatellites, Nonhuman primates, Primate evolution, Short tandem repeats, Y-chromosome
dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-294X.2004.02304.x, hdl.handle.net/1765/62088
Molecular Ecology
Centre for Rotterdam Cultural Sociology (CROCUS)

Erler, A, Stoneking, M, & Kayser, M.H. (2004). Development of Y-chromosomal microsatellite markers for nonhuman primates. Molecular Ecology, 13(10), 2921–2930. doi:10.1111/j.1365-294X.2004.02304.x