Molecular Characteristic Identification of Partial 16S rRNA Genes of Sperm Whales (Physeter macrocephalus Linnaeus, 1758)

  • Muhammad Mukhlis Kamal Department of Aquatic Resources Management, Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences, IPB University
  • Nurlisa A Butet Department of Aquatic Resources Management, Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences, IPB University
  • Endah Sri Rahayu Department of Aquatic Resources Management, Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences, IPB University
  • Agus Alim Hakim Department of Aquatic Resources Management, Faculty of Fisheries and Marine Sciences, IPB University
Keywords: 16S rRNA, Lawu Sea, sperm whale, Physeter macrocephalus


Sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus) is one of the marine mammals that is categorized as vulnerable on IUCN and Appendix I status on CITES. The aunthentic identity of the sperm whale can be traced molecularly. This study aims to identify the molecular characteristics of the sperm whale (P. macrocephalus) based on the partial 16s rRNA gene. Three samples of sperm whale tissue analyzed came from the Lawu Sea Waters, East Nusa Tenggara. The identification results based on the nucleotide base sequence show that the three samples have 99% similarity to Physeter catodon, where P. catodon is a synonym for P. macrocephalus. The alignment of the nucleotide sequences with the outgroup (Balaenoptera physalus and Balaena mysticetus) obtained the genetic distance values of the three samples with outgroups ranging from 0.0093–0.0726. In addition, there were 25 specific nucleotides of P. macrocephalus that were able to differentiate from outgroup species. This study is success to validate P. macrocephalus species based on the 16S rRNA gene and can be used as a strong molecular marker for the identification of P. macrocephalus.


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How to Cite
Mukhlis Kamal, M., A Butet, N., Rahayu, E. S., & Hakim, A. A. (2021). Molecular Characteristic Identification of Partial 16S rRNA Genes of Sperm Whales (Physeter macrocephalus Linnaeus, 1758) . Habitus Aquatica : Journal of Aquatic Resources and Fisheries Management, 2(1), 21–28.