Population Genetics and Conservation Genetics

Team leader: Dr. med.vet. Pamela Burger


Genetic Origin and Domestication of the Old World Camelids

Wild and domesticated camels (Photo P. Burger)
Photo of wild and domesticated camels 1
Historic stone engraving of a camel in Jordan (Photo P. Burger)
Stone engraving of a camel 2

Our group investigates the evolutionary history and domestication of the dromedary (Camelus dromedarius) and the Bactrian camel (C. bactrianus).

We ask when and where modern camels evolved, and how genetically diverse Old World camels are.

With our research we want to contribute to:

- in-situ conservation of the world’s last Wild Bactrian camels (C. ferus)
- conservation of livestock biodiversity resources


A herd of wild bactrian camels in Mongolia (Photo P. Charruau)
Photo of a wild camel herd 3
ISBN 978-3-7001-7244-4
ISBN 978-3-7001-7350-2
Online Ausgabe
Image of the book cover of the camel book

In 2012 the Austrian Academy of Sciences published a new book on camels, edited by Pamela Burger and Eva-Maria Knoll, Camels in Asia and North Africa 4The book, which is international and interdisciplinary in scope, aims to stimulate a knowledge exchange between the natural and social sciences.  Topics include the origin, domestication, breeding, husbandry, and trade of Old World camelids (dromedary, Bactrian camel and wild camel).  Their socio-cultural and economic significance, their representation in music, traditional medicine and veterinary medicine are discussed, as is the conservation of the last population of wild camels.


Phylogeography of African and Asiatic cheetahs


We also study the phylogeography and evolution of African and Asiatic cheetahs and investigate the distribution of the subspecies.  One research question concerns the genetic distinctiveness of subspecies.


South African cheetahs (Photo P. Charruau)
Photo of two cheetahs 5

Scientific contact

Dr.med.vet. Pamela Burger

T. +43 (1) 25077-7335

Email Pamela Burger


Team members


Dr.med.vet. Pamela Burger


Jean Elbers, PhD, Postdoctoral Researcher


Sara Lado, PhD student/FWF Project FP28029623

Lisa Preier, Master student

Jia Zhipeng, PhD student


Elmira Mohandesan (Postdoc)

Robert Fitak (Postdoc)

Lukas Lipp (Master student)

Pauline Charruau (PhD student)

Katja Silbermayr (PhD student)

Tom William Fulton, Bachelor student/intern



General contact


Savoyenstraße 1
A-1160 Wien

T +43 1 25077-7900
F +43 1 25077-7941

Email FIWI