Dating genetic bottleneck america cheetah summary
We have learned new lessons of survival, adaptation, and evolution from viewing the natural history of genomes in hundreds of detailed studies.A single case history of one species, the African cheetah, , is here reviewed to reveal a long-term story of conservation challenges and action informed by genetic discoveries and insights.These arguments have been addressed, thoroughly in our view, by counter opinions and a more balanced interpretation of demographic and genetic risks, which nonetheless confirm the threat of inbreeding effects for a population’s survival (Frankham 1995; May 1995; O’Brien 1994, 1998; 2003; O’Brien and Johnson 2005; Frankham et al. CCF is dedicated to helping the cheetah species survive in Namibia and throughout its remaining range in Africa and in Iran, home to the last of the Asian population.Taking a holistic approach, the CCF worked with the fledgling democracy that had pledged to treasure all its wildlife, including the dwindling cheetah population, then numbering less than 15000 across Africa.Cheetahs retain only 0.1–4% of overall genetic variation seen in most living species, much lower than other well-known examples of genetic impoverishment including Tasmanian devils, Virunga gorillas, Amur tigers, and even highly inbred domestic cats and dogs (Figure 1).Further mining of Chewbacca’s genome revealed a plausible explanation for the cheetahs’ ability to accept allogeneic skin grafts.Multiple features of the cheetah’s genome were detailed and annotated in depth: 20343 protein-coding genes, the wide complexity of repetitive DNA families, noncoding RNA families, DNA variation within and outside of genes, copy number variation, and genes that showed evidence of recent selective pressures.
The initial genome analyses unraveled a plethora of fascinating insights around the cheetah’s past and also its remarkable specialization for dazzling speed.The homogenization of the cheetah genes, including those mediating immune defenses, showed itself again in a devastating outbreak of feline coronavirus (Fe CV—a close virus relative of human SARS coronavirus) at a cheetah breeding facility in 1983 (O’Brien et al. This remains the worst case of FCo V infection ever reported in any species.