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Abstract: Population genetic studies play an important role in designing appropriate conservation plans, especially with regard to morphological distinct or geographically isolated populations. Among available molecular markers, microsatellite is a marker of choice in many population genetic studies because it has a high mutation rate, and as a result, can provide valuable insights into genetic history of a population. Specifically, analyses based on microsatellite can help determine genetic diversity, genetic structure, the number of genetically distinct populations, genetic history, and inbreeding coefficient. In this study, we present methods for generating microsatellite data for the population genetic study of an endangered species, the Crocodile Lizard (Shinisaurus crocodilurus vietnamensis), in Vietnam. Our bottle neck analyses using microsatellite data show that the population of this species in Vietnam already experiences a severe reduction of effective population size. The results of the study have critical implications for conservation of this endangered species in the near future.
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