The phylogenetic relationship of several subspecies of Ovis ammon were analyzed by comparing DNA sequences within the entire mitochondrial D-loop region. Five putative subspecies of ammon (dalai-lamae, darwini, hodgsoni, sairensis and adametzi) were sampled from four provinces in China [Xinjiang, Qinghai, Gansu and Xizang (Tibet)] and two (severtzovi and nigrimontana) from Uzbekistan. The argalis sampled represent most of the currently recognized putative subspecies of argali. Analysis of mtDNA sequences revealed high variability within ammon (7.7%), ranging from 2.4 to 11.5%. Maximum-Parsimony tree indicated that nigrimontana from Uzbekistan diverged first, followed by severtzovi from Uzbekistan. The dispersal of argalis into China gave rise to three clades, suggesting that the argali originated in Western Asia and then dispersed throughout the central Asian highlands on a southeastward course. Among the Chinese argalis, mtDNA analysis places dalai-lamae genetically closer to hodgsoni than to darwini. Severtzovi and nigrimontana are two separate subspecies and genetically distinct from the Chinese argali.
Mitochondrial Control Region Sequence Variation with the Argali Wild Sheep (Ovis ammon): Evolution and Conservation RelevanceMammalia
PublisherWalter de Gruyter
Citation InformationWu, C.H., Y.P. Zhang, T.D. Bunch, S. Wang and W. Wang 2003. Mitochondrial control region sequence variation with the argali wild sheep (Ovis ammon): evolution and conservation relevance Mammalia 67: 109-118.