Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding

Yali Xue, Javier Prado-Martinez, Peter H. Sudmant, Vagheesh Narasimhan, Qasim Ayub, Michal Szpak, Peter Frandsen, Yuan Chen, Bryndis Yngvadottir, David N. Cooper, Marc De Manuel, Jessica Hernandez-Rodriguez, Irene Lobon, Hans R. Siegismund, Luca Pagani, Michael A. Quail, Christina Hvilsom, Antoine Mudakikwa, Evan E. Eichler, Michael R. CranfieldTomas Marques-Bonet, Chris Tyler-Smith, Aylwyn Scally

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Mountain gorillas are an endangered great ape subspecies and a prominent focus for conservation, yet we know little about their genomic diversity and evolutionary past. We sequenced whole genomes from multiple wild individuals and compared the genomes of all four Gorilla subspecies. We found that the two eastern subspecies have experienced a prolonged population decline over the past 100,000 years, resulting in very low genetic diversity and an increased overall burden of deleterious variation. A further recent decline in the mountain gorilla population has led to extensive inbreeding, such that individuals are typically homozygous at 34% of their sequence, leading to the purging of severely deleterious recessive mutations from the population. We discuss the causes of their decline and the consequences for their future survival.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)242-245
Number of pages4
JournalScience
Volume348
Issue number6231
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 10 2015
Externally publishedYes

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Gorilla gorilla
Inbreeding
Genome
Population
Hominidae
Mutation
Survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Xue, Y., Prado-Martinez, J., Sudmant, P. H., Narasimhan, V., Ayub, Q., Szpak, M., ... Scally, A. (2015). Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding. Science, 348(6231), 242-245. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aaa3952

Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding. / Xue, Yali; Prado-Martinez, Javier; Sudmant, Peter H.; Narasimhan, Vagheesh; Ayub, Qasim; Szpak, Michal; Frandsen, Peter; Chen, Yuan; Yngvadottir, Bryndis; Cooper, David N.; De Manuel, Marc; Hernandez-Rodriguez, Jessica; Lobon, Irene; Siegismund, Hans R.; Pagani, Luca; Quail, Michael A.; Hvilsom, Christina; Mudakikwa, Antoine; Eichler, Evan E.; Cranfield, Michael R.; Marques-Bonet, Tomas; Tyler-Smith, Chris; Scally, Aylwyn.

In: Science, Vol. 348, No. 6231, 10.04.2015, p. 242-245.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Xue, Y, Prado-Martinez, J, Sudmant, PH, Narasimhan, V, Ayub, Q, Szpak, M, Frandsen, P, Chen, Y, Yngvadottir, B, Cooper, DN, De Manuel, M, Hernandez-Rodriguez, J, Lobon, I, Siegismund, HR, Pagani, L, Quail, MA, Hvilsom, C, Mudakikwa, A, Eichler, EE, Cranfield, MR, Marques-Bonet, T, Tyler-Smith, C & Scally, A 2015, 'Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding', Science, vol. 348, no. 6231, pp. 242-245. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aaa3952
Xue Y, Prado-Martinez J, Sudmant PH, Narasimhan V, Ayub Q, Szpak M et al. Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding. Science. 2015 Apr 10;348(6231):242-245. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.aaa3952
Xue, Yali ; Prado-Martinez, Javier ; Sudmant, Peter H. ; Narasimhan, Vagheesh ; Ayub, Qasim ; Szpak, Michal ; Frandsen, Peter ; Chen, Yuan ; Yngvadottir, Bryndis ; Cooper, David N. ; De Manuel, Marc ; Hernandez-Rodriguez, Jessica ; Lobon, Irene ; Siegismund, Hans R. ; Pagani, Luca ; Quail, Michael A. ; Hvilsom, Christina ; Mudakikwa, Antoine ; Eichler, Evan E. ; Cranfield, Michael R. ; Marques-Bonet, Tomas ; Tyler-Smith, Chris ; Scally, Aylwyn. / Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding. In: Science. 2015 ; Vol. 348, No. 6231. pp. 242-245.
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