J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2009, Vol. 51 ›› Issue (1): 100-106.DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-7909.2008.00768.x

Special Issue: Ecology and Global Changes

• Molecular Ecology and Evolution • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Strategic Conservation of Orchard Germplasm Based on Indigenous Knowledge and Genetic Diversity: a Case Study of Sour Orange Populations in China

Feng Ming, Qi-Kun Liu, Jin-Lei Shi, Wei Wang and Bao-Rong Lu   

  • Received:2008-04-14 Accepted:2008-05-15 Published:2009-01-01

Abstract: To effectively conserve sour orange (Citrus aurantium L.) germplasm on two islands at the estuary of Yangtze River in China, we estimated genetic variation and relationships of the known parental trees and their proposed descendents (young trees) using the fingerprints of random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD). Results based on RAPD analyses showed considerable genetic diversity in the parental populations (He=0.202). The overall populations including the parental and young trees showed slightly higher genetic diversity (He=0.298) than the parents, with about 10% variation between populations. An UPGMA dendrogram based on cluster analysis of the Jaccard similarity among individuals demonstrated a more complicated relationship of the parental and young trees from the two islands, although the young trees showed a clear association with parental trees. This indicates a significant contribution of parental trees in establishing the sour orange populations on the two islands. According to farmers’ knowledge, conservation of only one or two parental trees would be sufficient because they believed that the whole populations were generated from a single mother tree. However, this study suggests that preserving most parental trees and some selected young trees with distant genetic relationships should be an effective conservation strategy for sour orange germplasm on the two islands.

Key words: Citrus aurantium, genetic conservation, orchard genetic resources, random amplified polymorphic DNA variation, relationship.

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