Background: The brown mussel Perna perna (Linnaeus, 1758) is a dominant constituent of intertidal communities and a strong invader with multiple non-native populations distributed around the world. In a previous study, two polymorphic microsatellite loci were developed and used to determine population-level genetic diversity in invasive and native P. perna populations. However, higher number of microsatellite markers are required for reliable population genetic studies.In this context, in order to understand P. perna origins and history of invasion and to compare population genetic structure in native versus invaded areas, we developed 10 polymorphic microsatellite markers.
Findings: Described microsatellite markers were developed from an enriched genomic library. Analyses and characterization of loci using 20 individuals from a population in Western Sahara revealed on average 11 alleles per locus (range: 5-27) and mean gene diversity of 0.75 (range: 0.31 - 0.95). One primer pair revealed possible linkage disequilibrium while heterozygote deficiency was significant at four loci. Six of these markers cross-amplified in P. canaliculus (origin: New Zealand).
Conclusions: Developed markers will be useful in addressing a variety of questions concerning P. perna, including dispersal scales, genetic variation and population structure, in both native and invaded areas.