Analysis of sex-linked sequences supports a new mammal species in Europe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


European mammals have been the focus of particularly detailed taxonomic studies by traditional morphological methods. However, DNA analyses have the potential to reveal additional, cryptic species. We describe two highly divergent evolutionary lineages within a small Eurasian mammal, the field vole (Microtus agrestis). We show that the two lineages can be detected not only with maternally (mitochondrial DNA), but also with paternally (Y chromosome) and biparentally (X chromosome) inherited DNA sequences. Reciprocal monophyly of all genealogies and their congruent geographical distributions is consistent with reproductive isolation. Our results suggest that the field vole should be reclassified as two separate species.


  • L Hellborg
  • Islam Gunduz
  • Maarit Jaarola
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Biological Sciences


  • X, speciation, cryptic species, field vole (Microtus agrestis), Y chromosome, chromosome
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2025-2031
JournalMolecular Ecology
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2005
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Department of Cell and Organism Biology (Closed 2011.) (011002100)