Mitochondrial Cytochrome b Sequence Variations and Population Structure of Siberian Chipmunk (Tamias sibiricus) in Northeastern Asia and Population Substructure in South Korea

  • Lee, Mu-Yeong (Conservation Genome Resource Bank for Korean Wildlife, Brain Korea 21 Program for Veterinary Science and College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Lissovsky, Andrey A. (Zoological Museum of Moscow State University) ;
  • Park, Sun-Kyung (Conservation Genome Resource Bank for Korean Wildlife, Brain Korea 21 Program for Veterinary Science and College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Obolenskaya, Ekaterina V. (Zoological Museum of Moscow State University) ;
  • Dokuchaev, Nikolay E. (Institute of Biological Problems of the North FEB RAS) ;
  • Zhang, Ya-Ping (Laboratory for Conservation and Utilization of Bio-resource, Yunnan University) ;
  • Yu, Li (Laboratory for Conservation and Utilization of Bio-resource, Yunnan University) ;
  • Kim, Young-Jun (Conservation Genome Resource Bank for Korean Wildlife, Brain Korea 21 Program for Veterinary Science and College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Voloshina, Inna (Lazovsky State Nature Reserve) ;
  • Myslenkov, Alexander (Lazovsky State Nature Reserve) ;
  • Choi, Tae-Young (National Institute of Environmental Research, Environmental Research Complex) ;
  • Min, Mi-Sook (Conservation Genome Resource Bank for Korean Wildlife, Brain Korea 21 Program for Veterinary Science and College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Lee, Hang (Conservation Genome Resource Bank for Korean Wildlife, Brain Korea 21 Program for Veterinary Science and College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University)
  • Received : 2008.06.18
  • Accepted : 2008.10.09
  • Published : 2008.12.31


Twenty-five chipmunk species occur in the world, of which only the Siberian chipmunk, Tamias sibiricus, inhabits Asia. To investigate mitochondrial cytochrome b sequence variations and population structure of the Siberian chipmunk in northeastern Asia, we examined mitochondrial cytochrome b sequences (1140 bp) from 3 countries. Analyses of 41 individuals from South Korea and 33 individuals from Russia and northeast China resulted in 37 haplotypes and 27 haplotypes, respectively. There were no shared haplotypes between South Korea and Russia - northeast China. Phylogenetic trees and network analysis showed 2 major maternal lineages for haplotypes, referred to as the S and R lineages. Haplotype grouping in each cluster was nearly coincident with its geographic affinity. In particular, 3 distinct groups were found that mostly clustered in the northern, central and southern parts of South Korea. Nucleotide diversity of the S lineage was twice that of lineage R. The divergence between S and R lineages was estimated to be 2.98-0.98 Myr. During the ice age, there may have been at least 2 refuges in South Korea and Russia - northeast China. The sequence variation between the S and R lineages was 11.3% (K2P), which is indicative of specific recognition in rodents. These results suggest that T. sibiricus from South Korea could be considered a separate species. However, additional information, such as details of distribution, nuclear genes data or morphology, is required to strengthen this hypothesis.


cytochrome b sequence variation;population structure;Siberian chipmunk


Supported by : Korea Research Foundation


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