New microsatellite markers for assessment of genetic diversity in date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.).

3 Biotech 09/2011; 1(2):91-97. DOI: 10.1007/s13205-011-0010-z
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT New primer pairs of genomic DNA microsatellite markers were tested to assess the genetic diversity of eleven date palm genotypes. The results indicated that out of thirty, only seven primers (23.3%) failed to amplify the expected PCR fragments, while thirteen primers (43.3%) amplified monomorphic banding patterns and the remaining ten primers (33.4%) generated polymorphic banding patterns. A total of 77 alleles have been observed with a mean of 7.7 alleles per locus. The average of gene diversity was 0.80 ranging from 0.6 (in marker DP168) to 0.9 (in two markers DP157 and DP175). These new co-dominant markers will be a starting point for researchers making use of the markers for genetic mapping and diversity analysis of date palm.

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    ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) is an important tree in the Middle East and North Africa due to the nutritional value of its fruit. Molecular Breeding would accelerate genetic improvement of fruit tree through marker assisted selection. However, the lack of molecular markers in date palm restricts the application of molecular breeding. RESULTS: In this study, we analyzed 28,889 EST sequences from the date palm genome database to identify simple-sequence repeats (SSRs) and to develop gene-based markers, i.e. expressed sequence tag-SSRs (EST-SSRs). We identified 4,609 ESTs as containing SSRs, among which, trinucleotide motifs (69.7%) were the most common, followed by tetranucleotide (10.4%) and dinucleotide motifs (9.6%). The motif AG (85.7%) was most abundant in dinucleotides, while motifs AGG (26.8%), AAG (19.3%), and AGC (16.1%) were most common among trinucleotides. A total of 4,967 primer pairs were designed for EST-SSR markers from the computational data. In a follow up laboratory study, we tested a sample of 20 random selected primer pairs for amplification and polymorphism detection using genomic DNA from date palm cultivars. Nearly one-third of these primer pairs detected DNA polymorphism to differentiate the twelve date palm cultivars used. Functional categorization of EST sequences containing SSRs revealed that 3,108 (67.4%) of such ESTs had homology with known proteins. CONCLUSION: Date palm EST sequences exhibits a good resource for developing gene-based markers. These genic markers identified in our study may provide a valuable genetic and genomic tool for further genetic research and varietal development in date palm, such as diversity study, QTL mapping, and molecular breeding.
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