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Comparative and Functional Genomics
Volume 2012, Article ID 851379, 8 pages
Research Article

Mitochondrial DNA Variability within Uromastyx ornata philbyi (Agamidae: Squamata) from Southwestern Saudi Arabia

1Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Science, Taif University, Taif, P.O. Box 888, Saudi Arabia
2Department of Zoology, Faculty of Science, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt
3Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Minufiya University, Sadat City, Egypt
4Zoologischer Garten Frankfurt, Bernhard-Grzimek-Allee 1, 60316 Frankfurt am Main, Germany
5Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Taif University, Taif, P.O. Box 888, Saudi Arabia
6Graduate School of Natural Sciences, Nagoya City University, Aichi 467-8501, Japan

Received 19 August 2011; Revised 20 September 2011; Accepted 29 September 2011

Academic Editor: H. Heng

Copyright © 2012 Sayed A. M. Amer et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Approximately 2.4 kbp of mitochondrial DNA was sequenced from 9 individuals of Uromastyx ornata philbyi originating from Taif, Namas, Al-Baha, and Jazan in southwestern Saudi Arabia. The sequenced regions cover eight tRNA genes ( , , , , , , , and ) and two protein-coding genes (NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 and cytochrome b). U. ornata philbyi had an insertion of 170 bp length between and genes. The first 128 bp of this insertion was similar to the one identified earlier in U. ornata ornata and can be folded into a stem-and-loop structure, which was less stable in U. ornata philbyi than in U. ornata ornata, or the second gene. The next 42 bp of the insertion was unique in U. ornata philbyi and additionally retained a stable stem-and-loop structure. Most base substitutions found in the sequenced genes were synonymous transitions rather than transversions. Tree analyses supported the sister group relationship between the two U. ornata subspecies and divided U. ornata philbyi into two groups: Taif+Namas group in the east of Sarawat and Al-Baha+Jazan group in the west of Sarawat. These molecular data are in agreement with current classification of U. ornata.