Honors College Theses

Publication Date



Biology (B.S.B.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Quentin Fang


Dermacentor variabilis, more commonly known as the wood tick, or the American dog tick, can be found all over North America. D. variabilis is a common tick in Bulloch county, Georgia, USA, and little is known about the population structure of this population of the species. Microsatellite markers are able to locate sections of the genome and can aid in estimating relatedness among individuals in a population. Six different oligonucleotide primer pairs were published for D. variabilis, however, published and non-published works indicated that not all of those primer pairs were working equally well for PCR. This study is to test all six primer pairs on DNA samples of D. variabilis collected from Bulloch County, to determine their efficiency at amplifying microsatellite markers with PCR. The primers tested were 3B, 5E, 6F, Est120, DVA28, and DVA31. Of these six primers, Est120 was determined to be the most effective at locating and amplifying microsatellite markers in DNA samples of ticks, from the Bulloch county population of Dermacentor variabilis.

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