Biodiv Sci ›› 2012, Vol. 20 ›› Issue (2): 193-198.  DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1003.2012.06188

• Original Papers • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Application for identification of small mammals by DNA barcoding in Haidong area, Qinghai Province, China

Ying Ma1, Hailong Li1, Liang Lu2,*(), Qiyong Liu2   

  1. 1 Qinghai Institute for Endemic Disease Prevention and Control, Xining 811602
    2 National Institute for Communicable Disease Control and Prevention, Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Beijing 102200
  • Received:2011-10-20 Accepted:2012-03-10 Online:2012-03-20 Published:2012-04-09
  • Contact: Liang Lu


Because of the shortcomings of morphological classification, we studied the feasibility of DNA barcoding in the identification of small mammals. Small mammals belonging to 3 orders, 6 families and 14 genera were collected from the Haidong region in Qinghai Province. We analyzed COI gene sequences from 110 small mammal samples and the results showed that the average intraspecific genetic distance was small than 3%, average interspecific distance ranged from 5% to 10% and intergenus distance 12-19%. The average interspecific genetic distance was significantly greater than the intraspecific genetic distance. A Neighbor-Joining tree showed that samples of the same species formed monophyletic groups with high support value. The NJ tree implied that 6 individuals were misidentified in the field. Our results suggest that the DNA barcoding can increase identification accuracy relative to using morphology alone, and also that the mitochondrial COI gene is an efficacious candidate for DNA barcoding.

Key words: DNA barcoding, small mammals, COI gene