Owl Monkey Insertion Polymorphisms and Phylogenetics

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Owl monkeys (genus ), or "night monkeys" are platyrrhine primates in the Aotidae family. Early taxonomy only recognized one species, , until 1983, when Hershkovitz proposed nine unique species designations, classified into red-necked and gray-necked species groups based predominately on pelage coloration. Recent studies questioned this conventional separation of the genus and proposed designations based on the geographical location of wild populations. retrotransposons are a class of mobile element insertion (MEI) widely used to study primate phylogenetics. A scaffold-level genome assembly for one species, [Anan_2.0], facilitated large-scale ascertainment of nearly 2000 young lineage-specific insertions. This study provides candidate oligonucleotides for locus-specific PCR assays for over 1350 of these elements. For 314 elements across four taxa with multiple specimens, PCR analyses identified 159 insertion polymorphisms, including 21 grouping and (red-necked species) as sister taxa, with and (gray-necked) being more basal. DNA sequencing identified five novel elements from three different taxa. The datasets reported in this study will assist in species identification and provide a valuable resource for phylogenetics, population genetics and conservation strategies when applied to wild populations.

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