Rapid and low-cost molecular sexing of a corvid songbird using a single protocol with two universal primer sets

Doi: https://doi.org/10.13157/arla.68.2.2021.sc1

Authors: Jimena LOIS-MILEVICICH, Raúl O. GÓMEZ, Cynthia A. URSINO, Nicolás A. LOIS and Alicia DE LA COLINA

E-mail: jime.loism@bg.fcen.uba.ar

Published: Volume 68.2, July 2021. Pages 423-432.

Language: English

Keywords: 2550F/2718R, ChD1 gene, Corvidae, P2/P8 and Passeriformes


The absence of sex dimorphism in many bird species complicates sex determination by direct observation, hindering sex-specific studies. Standard protocols for molecular sexing include polymerase chain reaction (PCR) amplification of intron regions of the Chromodomain-helicase DNAbinding protein 1 (CHD1) gene. while several methods have been studied, their usefulness for songbirds (Passeriformes) has not been consistent and has largely depended on target species and on timeconsuming primer-set specific optimisation of available protocols. we tested a molecular sexing protocol with two universal primer sets (P2/P8 and 2550F/2718R) in a corvid songbird: the Plush-crested Jay Cyanocorax chrysops. The protocol was rapid and inexpensive as well as highly effective. Using 2550F/2718R, females were revealed by two bands separated for some 200 base pairs (bp) that resolved easily on 0.8% agarose gel. Conversely, P2/P8 female amplicons differed in roughly 30 bp and a more expensive 3% agarose gel was necessary to reveal them. Our results are contextualised with an up-to-date literature survey of molecular sexing in other corvids. The primer set 2550F/2718R is found to be effective, providing a reliable and low-cost method for sexing jays and other corvids.

Enter your email and password to access the contents of the subscribers of the magazine. If you are not subscribed click here

We use own and third party cookies for the proper operation of the Website, carrying out analytical metrics, showing multimedia content and advertising, and interacting with social networks. More information in our Cookies Policy.
Accept Exit