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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Corvallis, Oregon » National Clonal Germplasm Repository » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #343016

Research Project: Management of Temperate-Adapted Fruit, Nut, and Specialty Crop Genetic Resources and Associated Information

Location: National Clonal Germplasm Repository

Title: Assessing genetic diversity of wild southeastern North American Vaccinium species using microsatellite markers

Author
item Bassil, Nahla
item Bidani, Amira - Tunisian National Institute Of Agronomy
item Hummer, Kim
item Rowland, Lisa
item Olmstead, James - Driscoll'S
item Richards, Christopher
item Lyrene, Paul - University Of Florida

Submitted to: Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/3/2017
Publication Date: 11/14/2017
Citation: Bassil, N.V., Bidani, A., Hummer, K.E., Rowland, L.J., Olmstead, J., Richards, C.M., Lyrene, P. 2017. Assessing genetic diversity of wild southeastern North American Vaccinium species using microsatellite markers. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution. 65(3):939-950. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10722-017-0585-2.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10722-017-0585-2

Interpretive Summary: The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)-Agricultural Research Service (ARS)-National Clonal Germplasm Repository (NCGR) in Corvallis Oregon preserves genetic resources of many temperate fruit crops. This genebank contains more than 1700 cultivars and wild relatives of blueberry from 33 countries. Wild species representatives from northwestern, central and south Florida, and neighboring US states were collected in multiple USDA expeditions and are being preserved at the NCGR-Corvallis. This invaluable germplasm is vulnerable to loss in the wild due to encroachment of human development. The objective of this study was to evaluate genetic diversity in 67 individuals from three southeastern species using DNA-based techniques. Results from our analyses indicated that the samples from each species could be reliably resolved with these DNA markers. In addition, we were able to detect a mis-labeled cultivar ‘Johnblue’, two mis-classified accessions PI 554933 and PI 613656, and four accessions of previously undescribed hybrid origin, PI 554933, PI 657207, PI 657192, and Florida 4B_1790. Florida 4B_1790, the donor of low chilling for the southern highbush blueberry, was confirmed as the parent of US 74. Genetic diversity assessment and identification of these wild accessions are crucial for optimal germplasm management and open opportunities to utilize natural variation in breeding programs.

Technical Abstract: The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)-Agricultural Research Service (ARS), National Clonal Germplasm Repository (NCGR) in Corvallis, Oregon, preserves genetic resources of fruit crops. This genebank contains more than 1700 Vaccinium accessions from 33 countries. Wild species representatives from Northwestern, Central and Southern Florida, and neighboring US states were collected in multiple USDA exploration expeditions and are being preserved at the NCGR-Corvallis. This germplasm is particularly vulnerable to loss in the wild due to encroachment of human development in key habitats and biotic and abiotic stresses from climate change. Fourteen simple sequence repeats (SSRs), previously developed from the highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) cultivar ‘Bluecrop’, were used to estimate genetic diversity and genetic differentiation of 67 diploid individuals from three species including 19 V. elliottii, 12 V. fuscatum, and 35 V. darrowii accessions collected throughout the species ranges. Results from our analyses indicated that the samples from each species could be reliably resolved using genetic distance measures with ordination and neighbor joining approaches. In addition, we estimated admixture among these species using Bayesian assignment tests, and were able to identify a mis-labeled accession of V. darrowii ‘Johnblue’, two mis-classified accessions PI 554933 and PI 613656, and four accessions of previously undescribed hybrid origin, PI 554933, PI 657207, PI 657192, and Florida 4B_1790. Allele composition at the 14 SSRs confirmed that Florida 4B_1790, the donor of low chilling for the southern highbush blueberry, was the critical parent of US 74. Genetic diversity assessment and identification of these wild accessions are crucial for optimal germplasm management and open opportunities to utilize natural variation in breeding programs.