Journal Article

Mitochondrial DNA from Prehistoric Canids Highlights Relationships Between Dogs and South-East European Wolves

Fabio Verginelli, Cristian Capelli, Valentina Coia, Marco Musiani, Mario Falchetti, Laura Ottini, Raffaele Palmirotta, Antonio Tagliacozzo, Iacopo De Grossi Mazzorin and Renato Mariani-Costantini

in Molecular Biology and Evolution

Published on behalf of Society for Molecular Biology and Evolution

Volume 22, issue 12, pages 2541-2551
Published in print December 2005 | ISSN: 0737-4038
Published online August 2005 | e-ISSN: 1537-1719 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/molbev/msi248
Mitochondrial DNA from Prehistoric Canids Highlights Relationships Between Dogs and South-East European Wolves

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Evolutionary Biology
  • Molecular and Cell Biology

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

The question of the origins of the dog has been much debated. The dog is descended from the wolf that at the end of the last glaciation (the archaeologically hypothesized period of dog domestication) was one of the most widespread among Holarctic mammals. Scenarios provided by genetic studies range from multiple dog-founding events to a single origin in East Asia. The earliest fossil dogs, dated ≈17–12,000 radiocarbon (14C) years ago (YA), were found in Europe and in the Middle East. Ancient DNA (a-DNA) evidence could contribute to the identification of dog-founder wolf populations. To gain insight into the relationships between ancient European wolves and dogs we analyzed a 262-bp mitochondrial DNA control region fragment retrieved from five prehistoric Italian canids ranging in age from ≈15,000 to ≈3,000 14C YA. These canids were compared to a worldwide sample of 547 purebred dogs and 341 wolves. The ancient sequences were highly diverse and joined the three major clades of extant dog sequences. Phylogenetic investigations highlighted relationships between the ancient sequences and geographically widespread extant dog matrilines and between the ancient sequences and extant wolf matrilines of mainly East European origin. The results provide a-DNA support for the involvement of European wolves in the origins of the three major dog clades. Genetic data also suggest multiple independent domestication events. East European wolves may still reflect the genetic variation of ancient dog-founder populations.

Keywords: dog; wolf; mtDNA; ancient DNA; archaeozoology; evolution

Journal Article.  7798 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology ; Molecular and Cell Biology

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content. subscribe or login to access all content.