Scientia Marina, Vol 77, No 4 (2013)

Searching for a stock structure in Sardina pilchardus from the Adriatic and Ionian seas using a microsatellite DNA-based approach

Paolo Ruggeri
Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita e dell’Ambiente, Università Politecnica delle Marche , Italy

Andrea Splendiani
Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita e dell’Ambiente, Università Politecnica delle Marche , Italy

Sara Bonanomi
Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita e dell’Ambiente, Università Politecnica delle Marche - Technical University of Denmark, National Institute of Aquatic Resources, Section for Marine Living , Italy

Enrico Arneri
FAO-FIRF, Fisheries and Aquaculture Department, AdriaMed Project , Italy

Nando Cingolani
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze Marine Sezione Pesca Marittima , Italy

Alberto Santojanni
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze Marine Sezione Pesca Marittima , Italy

Sabrina Colella
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze Marine Sezione Pesca Marittima , Italy

Fortunata Donato
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze Marine Sezione Pesca Marittima , Italy

Massimo Giovannotti
Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita e dell’Ambiente, Università Politecnica delle Marche , Italy

Vincenzo Caputo Barucchi
Dipartimento di Scienze della Vita e dell’Ambiente, Università Politecnica delle Marche - Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Scienze Marine Sezione Pesca Marittima , Italy


In the present study the genetic variability of European sardine from Adriatic and Ionian seas was investigated in order to detect the occurrence of genetic structure within and between these basins. In several samples the analysis of genetic variability at eight microsatellite loci showed a number of homozygote individuals higher than expected at Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. The inter-population differentiation level estimated by AMOVA, qST and rRST and Bayesian descriptors detected no signs of population differentiation between the samples analysed. These results are consistent with previous studies based on allozymes and several mitochondrial DNA markers and add further evidence contradicting the early identification, based on morphological and reproductive data, of two sub-populations in the Adriatic Sea.


microsatellite DNA; population genetics; European sardine; stock identification method; small pelagic fish; Adriatic Sea; Ionian Sea

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