Isolation and characteristics of 10 microsatellite markers from the endangered coconut crab (Birgus latro)

Chai Hsia Gan, See Min Tee, Pei Ciao Tang, Jay Ming Che Yang, Francis Freire, Andrew McGowan, Jiddawi Narriman, Mohammed Suleiman Mohammed, Hwey Lian Hsieh, Chang Po Chen, Charles Sheppard, Chaolun Allen Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The coconut crab (Birgus latro), an endangered marine-dispersed crustacean, is facing severe and probably accelerating population extinction worldwide, but biological information on its conservation remains deficient. In order to reveal the genetic structure of B. latro, 10 microsatellite loci were developed. A high degree of polymorphism was observed with a mean number of alleles per locus of 16.9. The mean expected heterozygosities were also high, ranging from 0.742 to 0.965. The observed heterozygosities ranged from 0.210 to 0.925. Departures from Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium were observed at five loci after the Bonferroni correction. These hypervariable markers will be utilized to study the genetic diversity and conservation of B. latro throughout its distribution range in the Pacific and Indian Oceans.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1448-1450
Number of pages3
JournalMolecular Ecology Resources
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Birgus latro
  • Coconut crab
  • Coenobitidae
  • Endangered species
  • Microsatellites

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Genetics


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