Anopheles (Cellia) maculatus Theobald is a major malaria vector in southern Thailand and peninsular Malaysia, and previous population genetic studies suggested that mountain ranges act as barriers to gene flow. In this study we examine the genetic variance among 12 collections of natural populations in southern Thailand by analyzing 7 microsatellite loci. Based on analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA), three geographic populations of An. maculatus are suggested. The northern population exists in western Thailand north of 12° north latitude. Mosquitoes to the south fall into two genetic populations: 1) the middle southern collections located on the west side of the Phuket mountain range between 8° and 10° north latitude, and 2) the southern collections located on the east of the Phuket mountain range located between approximately 6.5° and 11.5° north latitude. AMOVA revealed significant genetic differentiation between northern and middle southern and southern populations. The middle southern population was moderately differentiated from the southern population. Furthermore, gene flow was restricted between proximal collections located on different sides of the Phuket mountain range. Collections separated by 50 km exhibited restriction of gene flow when separated by geographic barriers, whereas greater gene flow was evident among collections 650 km apart but without geographic barriers.
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Vol. 22 • No. 2