Near fixation of melanism in leopards of the Malay Peninsula

@article{Kawanishi2010NearFO,
  title={Near fixation of melanism in leopards of the Malay Peninsula},
  author={Kae Kawanishi and Melvin E. Sunquist and Eduardo Eizirik and Antony J. Lynam and Dusit Ngoprasert and W. N. Wan Shahruddin and D. Mark Rayan and Dionysius Shankar Kumar Sharma and Robert Steinmetz},
  journal={Journal of Zoology},
  year={2010},
  volume={282},
  pages={201-206}
}
Melanistic leopards Panthera pardus are common in south-east Asian forests but the exact frequency of this variant phenotype is difficult to assess. Records from camera-trapping studies conducted at 22 locations in Peninsular Malaysia and southern Thailand between 1996 and 2009 show that only melanistic leopards were present in samples south of the Isthmus of Kra. During 42 565 trap-nights, we collected 445 photos of melanistic leopards and 29 photos of the spotted or non-melanistic morph. All… 
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This work identifies mutations of Agouti signaling protein (ASIP) or the Melanocortin 1 receptor (MC1R) as independent causes of melanism in three closely related South American species: the pampas cat, the kodkod, and Geoffroy's cat.
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