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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Variability in Corolla Color and Malate Dehydrogenase Banding Patterns Within a Population of Agastache Rugosa (Fisher & Meyer) Kuntze

item Fuentos-Granados, Roger - IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY
item Widrlechner, Mark

Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 31, 1996
Publication Date: N/A

Interpretive Summary: Wrinkled giant hyssop, Agastache rugosa, is native to Asia, where it has been cultivated for both culinary and medicinal purposes. It also holds promise as a bedding plant, floricultural crop, and a source of nectar for honey bees. Previous studies have described little or no genetic variability in this species. But in one population of wrinkled giant hyssop from a Polish institute, we found variation for both flower (corolla) color and for the enzyme, malate dehydrogenase. We conducted breeding experiments to determine whether this variation was under genetic control. We learned that flower color was controlled by a single gene, with purple flowers dominant to white. The enzyme variation was also controlled by a single gene. Flower color and enzyme variation were inherited independently. This is the first report of genetic variation for enzymes for wrinkled giant hyssop and the genetic markers reported here may be valuable to researchers studying the breeding biology or genetic improvement of this species. In addition, the white-flowered plants are very attractive and they may have direct use as bedding plants.

Technical Abstract: This study was conducted to determine the inheritance of corolla color and of malate dehydrogenase (Mdh, EC banding patterns in Agastache rugosa. Results of the study demonstrate that corolla color is controlled by a single gene, in which the purple variant is dominant to white. The Mdh-3 banding patterns are controlled by two alleles, each of which is associated with the expression of two cosegregating bands. A monomeric quaternary structure for Mdh-3, which is rather atypical among plant species, can be inferred from the results. This is the first report of heritable isozyme variability in populations of A. rugosa. We found no linkage between the locus governing corolla color and the Mdh-3 locus.

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