Phylogeography of lions ( Panthera leo ssp.) reveals three distinct taxa and a late Pleistocene reduction in genetic diversity
Barnett, Ross; Shapiro, Beth; Barnes, Ian; Ho, Simon; Burger, Joachim; Yamaguchi, Nobuyuki; Higham, Thomas F. G.; Wheeler, H. Todd; Rosendahl, Wilfried; Sher, Andrei; Sotnikova, Marina; Kuznetsova, Tatiana; Baryshnikov, Gennady F.; Martin, Larry D.; Harington, C Richard; Burns, James A.; Cooper, Alan
Lions were the most widespread carnivores in the late Pleistocene, ranging from southern Africa to the southern USA, but little is known about the evolutionary relationships among these Pleistocene populations or the dynamics that led to their extinction. Using ancient DNA techniques, we obtained mitochondrial sequences from 52 individuals sampled across the present and former range of lions. Phylogenetic analysis revealed three distinct clusters: (i) modern lions, Panthera leo; (ii) extinct...[Show more]
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