Developing Microsatellites for the Pest Flatworms

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Coastal Ecosystem and Public Health


Marian Litvaitis UNH - Department of Natural Resources & the Environment Principal Investigator

I would like to develop microsatellites for the pest flatworms. Development of microsatellites is a cost- and labor-intensive process that involves the production of a genomic library, enriching for microsatellites, the screening of the library for positive clones, the sequencing of the inserts, primer design, and primer testing and optimization.

To assure the successful recovery of polyclad microsatellites, I have initiated a collaboration with the Savannah River Ecology Lab (SREL). The SREL routinely develops microsatellites for a number of species. Thus, the initial steps of enriching for microsatellites and library screening will be done at the SREL, and I will complete the insert sequencing and primer development and optimization here at UNH. The advantages of this arrangement are a guarantee of a library that indeed contains microsatellites, a decrease in cost because no equipment needs to be duplicated, the backup of an expert lab, and a training component for an undergraduate student who will spend time at the SREL.