2008 Student Research Conference:
21st Annual Student Research Conference

Will the Real Host Please Stand Up? Regional Model for Identifying Peromyscus Species
Rauleen Mei B. Caballas
Dr. Stephanie A. Fore and Dr. Hyun-Joo Kim, Faculty Mentors

Peromyscus leucopus, the white-footed mouse, and P. maniculatus, deer mouse, are two host species that are difficult to distinguish between one another solely on their morphological characteristics. Using previously measured specimens from the mammal museum, a regional model for Northeast Missouri was established. This was accomplished by first verifying a subsample of randomly chosen specimens using species specific PCR primers. Then a mathematical model was developed using the discriminant function analysis in SPSS. After the model was established, we found that the cutoff value was 0.775 which was created by taking the mean of the group centroid of each host species. According to this cutoff, any discriminant score that falls above it is considered P. leucopus and any that falls below it is P. maniculatus.

Keywords: Peromyscus, leucopus, maniculatus, PCR, mathematical model, Northeast Missouri

Topic(s):Biology

Presentation Type: Poster

Session: 3-3
Location: OP Lobby
Time: 4:15

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