REDESIGNING FORAGE GERMPLASM AND PRODUCTION SYSTEMS FOR EFFICIENCY, PROFIT, AND SUSTAINABILITY OF DAIRY FARMS
Location: Dairy Forage and Aquaculture Research
Title: DNA Markers and Sequences Reveal Geographic Races of Reed Canarygrass (Phalaris arundinacea)
Submitted to: International Symposium of Molecular Breeding of Forage Turf
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: January 18, 2010
Publication Date: March 15, 2010
Citation: Jakubowski, A., Casler, M.D., Denton, M., Costich, D., Buckler Iv, E.S., Phillips, M., Jackson, R., Krohn, A. 2010. DNA Markers and Sequences Reveal Geographic Races of Reed Canarygrass (Phalaris arundinacea) [abstract]. Proceedings of the 6th International Symposium on the Molecular Breeding of Forage and Turf, March 15-19, 2010, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Abstract P-44: p.98.
Reed canarygrass (Phalaris arundinacea L.) is a cool-season perennial with a circumglobal distribution in the northern hemisphere, native to Europe, Asia, and North America. Repeated introductions of European germplasm into North America have created confusion over the origins of reed canarygrass germplasm found in wetlands, pastures, and breeding programs. The objectives of this study were to identify sources of DNA marker variation (1) among reed canarygrass cultivars from Europe and North America, (2) between land races and improved cultivars from North America, and (3) between living taxa and ancient taxa of this species preserved as herbarium specimens. Analysis of amplified fragment length polymorphic (AFLP) DNA markers revealed two groups of cultivars. One group consisted of three closely related but geographically diverse North American land races that were completely separated from all other plants in the first two dimensions of the AFLP incidence matrix. The complete discrimination of these plants from all European plants suggests their possible origin from native North American reed canarygrass taxa. These results were supported by cpDNA sequence analysis, which additionally revealed separation of a potential Scandinavian cytoplasmic race from the continental European cytoplasmic race. This is the strongest evidence to date suggesting that native North American reed canarygrass germplasm has been preserved within cultivars of this species. Additional analyses have revealed a DNA sample, deriving from one herbarium specimen collected in 1899 from a high mountain meadow in southwestern Montana, nearly identical to DNA from the putative North American land races. Documented absence of agriculture from this region suggests that these cpDNA haplotypes and AFLP markers may represent native North American genotypes of this species. Preliminary survey results have identified this haplotype in a small number of living specimens, mixed with European haplotypes at some sites or in pure culture at other sites.