Journal Article

A double DNA approach for identifying <i>Macrorhamphosus scolopax</i> (Pisces, Centriscidae)

Nikoletta Karaiskou, Alexander Triantafyllidis, Maritsa Margaroni, Dimitris Karatzas and Costas Triantaphyllidis

in ICES Journal of Marine Science

Published on behalf of ICES/CIEM

Volume 62, issue 8, pages 1683-1690
Published in print January 2005 | ISSN: 1054-3139
Published online January 2005 | e-ISSN: 1095-9289 | DOI:
A double DNA approach for identifying Macrorhamphosus scolopax (Pisces, Centriscidae)

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  • Environmental Science
  • Marine and Estuarine Biology


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DNA-based methodologies are increasingly used successfully to elucidate cases of misidentification of adult individuals of fish species with morphological similarities. However, the problem of misidentification can arise even earlier than adulthood, between congeneric and even distantly related species with similar morphology in the early developmental stages. Therefore, a double DNA approach was developed for Macrorhamphosus scolopax, to identify and discriminate it from European species of the genus Trachurus. These species overlap geographically and temporally and are characterized by morphologically similar eggs. The approach looks at both mitochondrial and nuclear loci. Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) amplification of the 16S rRNA mtDNA gene was followed by restriction analysis with two species-specific enzymes: EcoRV and PmlI. Digestion with these endonucleases yielded species-specific electrophoretic profiles. Additionally, the nuclear multi-copy 5S rRNA gene was selected as an alternative candidate for identifying M. scolopax. The universality of the results was verified by screening a large number of fish from five geographical regions, covering most of the overlapping distribution of the species. The output is a double DNA methodology that can be used for egg identification and which could be of value in the egg production method of biomass assessment.

Keywords: genetic identification; M. scolopax; PCR–RFLP; 5S rRNA; 16S rRNA

Journal Article.  3471 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Environmental Science ; Marine and Estuarine Biology

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