Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution

Published by Springer Nature

Online ISSN: 1573-5109


Print ISSN: 0925-9864


Fig. 1 Spatial patterns of Fdp alleles occurrence in Ae. tauschii ssp. tauschii 
Fig. 2 Spatial patterns of Cat2 alleles occurrence in Ae. tauschii ssp. tauschii 
Table 2 Numbers and geography of origin of ssp. strangulata accessions analysed for AK, CAT, EP and FDP enzyme systems ssp. strangulata AK CAT EP FDP 
Fig. 3 Spatial patterns of Ak alleles occurrence in Ae. tauschii ssp. tauschii 
Fig. 4 Spatial patterns of Ak alleles occurrence in Ae. tauschii ssp. strangulata 


Spatial patterns of adenylate kinase, catalase, endopeptidase and fructose-1,6-diphosphatase encoding genes allelic variation in Aegilops tauschii Coss
  • Article
  • Full-text available

January 2011


77 Reads

Investigation of spatial patterns of adenylate kinase, catalase, endopeptidase and fructose-1,6-diphosphatase encoding genes (Ak, Cat1, Cat2, Ep, Fdp) allelic variation in Aegilops tauschii was carried out. About 300 accessions, representing all the species range were taken for the study. Cat2 and Fdp loci are completely monomorphic in ssp. strangulata and in the western part of ssp. tauschii range, as well. Both Cat2 and Fdp are highly polymorphic in the eastern part of ssp. tauschii range, with the patterns of this polymorphism being discordant in these two loci. Ak 108, a rare allele with sporadical spatial occurrence, was found in ssp. tauschii only. On the contrary, Ak 92 is absent in ssp. tauschii: it is the most common Ak allele in ssp. strangulata in Precaspian Iran, the most moist part of the area, and is very rare in other parts of ssp. strangulata area. Ep is a highly polymorphic locus with the highest level of variation in the west of Ae. tauschii area, where this species had originated. Ep allele variation patterns are rather similar in ssp. tauschii and ssp. strangulata. The data reveal the adaptive nature of Ak, Cat2, and Fdp allele variation, while Ep polymorphism seems to be mostly neutral. Keywords Aegilops tauschii –Allozymes–Genetic variation–Natural selection

Caillon S, Quero-Garcia J, Lescure JP, Lebot V. Nature of taro (Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott) genetic diversity prevalent in a Pacific Ocean island, Vanua Lava, Vanuatu. Genet Resour Crop Evol 53: 1273-1289

September 2006


146 Reads

Taro (Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott), cultivated in Vêtuboso, a village of northern Vanuatu, Melanesia, was surveyed to: (1) assess the extent of morphological and molecular variation being maintained by growers at the village level and, (2) compare this diversity with the diversity found in the crops in Vanuatu. Ethnobotanical data were combined with AFLP analysis to elucidate possible sources of variation. Folk assessment of variation is based on: (a) morphological characteristics (11 characters), (b) names and (c) classification according to habitat, uses, origin and agronomic adaptation. This 3-fold approach allowed growers to differentiate 96 morphotypes, all of which are given distinct vernacular names. AFLP fingerprints successfully differentiated all these 96 morphotypes which do not present a significant intra-clonal variation. But genetic results showed no clear groupings according to geographic origin or habitat of morphotypes and stated that the diversity found within the village was comparable with the overall diversity found in Vanuatu. Local nomenclature and stories associated with each cultivar suggested three sources of diversity: introductions (38%), somatic mutations (15%) and sexual recombinations (48%). AFLP results confirm folk beliefs about origin at least for three pairs of mutants. The 11 so-called wild forms analysed by AFLP were suggested to be feral, escapes from domestication. A dynamic in situ conservation strategy (DISC), favouring a broadening of the national genetic base, was discussed for taro.

Singh AK, Subrahmanyam P, Gurtu S, 1996. Variation in a wild groundnut species, Arachis duranensis Kapov. & W.C. Gregory. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 43:135-42.

April 1996


40 Reads

Forty-two accessions of Arachis duranensis, a wild groundnut species that has been reported as a source of resistance to several groundnut diseases, were studied for 30 quantitative traits including total protein content, oil content, and reaction to groundnut rust. Protein profiles were also investigated for variation at the molecular level. Principal component analysis was applied to 28 traits that showed significant variation. Of these, only five characters, namely, height of the main stem, length of apical leaflet on the main stem, length of isthmus between pods, width of seed, and reaction to groundnut rust, accounted for more than 61.4% of the total variation. Protein profiles of these accessions were broadly similar, except some accessions which differed in few bands. The importance of these variations in strategies for germplasm collection and breeding is discussed.

Cytogenetic relationships between Avena insularis (2n=28) and both A. strigosa (2n=14) and A. murphyi (2n=28)

October 1999


52 Reads

The newly discovered tetraploid oat Avena insularis was crossed with the diploid A. strigosa and the tetraploid A. murphyi. Considerably reduced chromosome association at meiosis and a low average number of chiasmata per cell of the A. strigosa A. insularis hybrids indicated that the diploid A. strigosa did not participate in the creation of A. insularis. From A. murphyi, A. insularis differed by four chromosomal rearrangements and the hybrids between them were sterile. The tetraploids A. magna, A. murphyi and A. insularis share the two to four floret large diaspore, which is adapted to heavy alluvial soil. They all, however, diverge from one another by four chromosomal rearrangements. At this point it is not possible to determine whether they have diverged from a single tetraploid progenitor, or developed from different diploid species.

Table 1 . Number and percentage of accessions in different regions, and countries within region, of entire collection and core subset of finger millet germplasm. 
Table 2 . Number and percentage of accessions belonging to different races and biological status in entire collection and core subset of finger millet germplasm. 
Table 4 . Shannon diversity index in the entire collection and core collection for various qualitative and quantitative char- acters in finger millet. 
Development of Core Subset of Finger Millet Germplasm Using Geographical Origin and Data on 14 Quantitative Traits

June 2006


726 Reads






Finger millet [Eleusine coracana (L.) Gaertn.] is an important cereal food crop in Africa and South Asia. It is a hardy crop that can be grown in very diverse environments from almost at sea level to about 2400m.a.s.l. Finger millet has an excellent food value as its seeds contain protein ranging from 7 to 14% and are particularly rich in methionine amino acid, iron, and calcium. Despite all these merits, this crop has been neglected from the main stream of crop improvement research. One of the means to boost its production and productivity is to enhance utilization of finger millet germplasm to breed superior varieties. Keeping this objective in view, a core subset of finger millet germplasm (622 accessions) based on origin and data on 14 quantitative traits was developed from the entire global collection of 5940 accessions held in the genebank at ICRISAT, Patancheru, India. The comparison of means, variances, frequency distribution, Shannon-Weaver diversity index (H′) and phenotypic correlations indicated that the core subset represents the entire collection. These tests indicated that sampling was optimal and the diversity has been captured very well in the core subset. The correlation analysis indicated that panicle exsertion and longest finger length could be given lower priority in the future germplasm evaluation work of finger millet.

Fig. 1 Seed samples and seedlings of 151-year old Acacia spp. seed. a Seed containers stored in the museum. b Seeds of Albizia lebbeck. c Seeds of Paraserianthes lophantha. d Seeds of Acacia 
Figure 2 of 2
Germination of 151-year old Acacia spp. seeds

June 2010


1,298 Reads

A collection of seeds from five Acacia species was made in Egypt in 1856. Since then, the seeds have been stored at room temperature in different Swedish museums. Due to the extreme longevity within the seeds of Acacia and related species, germination tests were performed on the now 151-year old seed. Seeds of two of the five species tested germinated. The first, Acacia farnesiana (L.) Willd., had two seeds germinate, and Acacia melanoxylon R. Br. ex Ait. f. had one seed germinate. In addition, DNA was extracted from the aged seed and DNA preservation was analyzed. Four of the tested species displayed well preserved DNA, whereas DNA from Albizia lebbeck (L.) Benth. showed signs of degradation. The 151-year longevity of the Acacia seeds is among the longest of dry-stored seeds reported. Several independent studies now report on extreme survival capacity for Acacia and related genera suggesting that these genera are suitable for studies on the characteristics of seeds with long storage performance. The results also demonstrate that herbaria and seed collections stored in museums and institutional depositories can be alternate sources of plants genetic material and should be given conservation attention. Keywords Acacia -DNA preservation-Macrobiotic seed-Seed longevity-Seed storage

History of coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) in Mexico: 1539–1810

December 1996


7,551 Reads

The genetic diversity of coconut palm in Mexico has arisen from introductions carried out during the Spanish colonial period (1539–1810). The interest of estimating the extent and origin of the genetic diversity motivated the investigation of sites, dates and origins of the introductions, the initial areas of production, the economic importance of the cultivation and its diffusion during the colonial era. Historical records indicate that the first introductions to the Atlantic coast were through the ports of Veracruz and Campeche around 1549 and originated from Cape Verde (West Africa) and the Caribbean islands. Introductions to the west coast were carried out through the ports of Colima and Acapulco and originated from Panama around 1539, from the Solomon Islands around 1569 and from the Philippines from 1571 onwards. Coconut was present in the west coast of Panama in pre-Columbian times, but its origin and introduction date is unknown. Commercial plantations of economic importance were established on the west coast stimulating further introductions and a wider diffusion of the plant during the 16th and 17th centuries. This diffusion may have brought about genetic flow between ecotypes from different origins. No commercial plantations were established on the east coast during the 16th and 17th centuries. Prohibitions of the cultivation of this plant brought about a halt in development on the west coast during the 18th century. This historical knowledge has enabled us to select key sites in which to gather samples to establish germplasm collections.

Fig. 1 Frequencies of different types of microsatellites in 18 underutilized crop species  
A study on relative abundance, composition and length variation of microsatellites in 18 underutilized crop species

March 2009


139 Reads

In the present work, genomic DNA libraries for 18 underutilized crop species (including 11 dicot and 7 monocot species) were enriched for several di- and tri- nucleotide microsatellites by using an optimized procedure. About 500–960 clones from each library were sequenced and all the sequences were characterized to have a comparative look on relative abundance, composition and length variations of perfect microsatellites among different crops. Sequence analysis revealed contrasting differences in the abundance of di- and tri-nucleotide microsatellites with the predominance of tri-nucleotide microsatellites in 11 crops and that of di-nucleotides in other 8 crops. Among di-nucleotide microsatellites, AG/GA class was the most abundant in all the crops except for four crops in which AC/CA class was predominant. Among tri-nucleotide repeats, AGC/GCA/CAG class was the most abundant in eight crops followed by AGG/GGA/GAG class in four crops, whereas in the remaining six crops, the most abundant class was highly variable. The longest di- and tri-nucleotide repeats were observed in Chinese cabbage and mungbean with the average lengths of 70 and 57 base pairs, respectively. These observations revealed species-specific in the distributions of microsatellite repeat motifs. The present study provides highly valuable information that can be useful in targeted development of specific microsatellites markers for genetic analysis of these underutilized crops.

Maintenance in genebanks, a case study: Contaminations observed in the Nurnberg oats of 1831

December 1997


32 Reads

The genetic identity and purity of the Nurnberg oats of 1831 stored at Freising, Braunschweig and Linz were studied by storage-protein electrophoresis. The seven oat lines showed two electrophoretic phenotypes with frequencies of five and two. All conceivable levels of contamination of the lines were found ranging from identity over contamination by the respective other Nurnberg phenotype and/or foreign phenotypes up to the replacement of a line by a foreign phenotype. In addition, at one of the storage sites the identification numbers are different. The case study shows vividly that genotype maintenance in genebanks demands the utmost care.

Genetic diversity in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.): II. An evaluation of selected cultivars released between 1846 and 1978

December 1996


45 Reads

Genetic variation among 155 U.S. modern and heirloom cultivars was assessed from assays of 21 polymorphic isozyme loci. Four loci (Fdp-1, Mdh-1, Mpi-1 and Pgd-1) were monomorphic. Multivariate analyses partitioned cultivars into two distinct groups: those released before 1968, and those released after 1968. Cluster analysis produced a dendrogram with 14 nodes and 28 groups. Modern U.S. and European cultivars released after 1968 differed in isozyme frequencies. Isozymic profiles clearly discriminated some cultivars with unique attributes and/or pedigrees [e.g., Windermoor Wonder (USA), Gergana (The Netherlands), Seiram (The Netherlands), Fancy Pak (USA), Dasher 2 (USA), and WI 2757 (USA)].

Figure 3. Neighbor-joining tree of ETS sequences. The tree was produced with TREECON, using Kimura's 2-parameter method for distance estimation. Bootstrap values are expressed in percentages.
Phylogenetic analysis of complete 5′ external transcribed spacers of the 18S ribosomal RNA genes of diploid Aegilops and related species (Triticeae, Poaceae)

November 2004


159 Reads

PCR systems were designed to amplify the entire 5 external transcribed spacer (ETS) region of the 18S rRNA gene of all the diploid species of Aegilops and several other taxa closely related to domesticated wheat. Phylogenetic analysis was performed on the complete ETS sequences using the neighbor-joining, maximum parsimony, and maximum likelihood methods. Among the individual taxa studied, speciation in Secale is very recent. In the case of the A genome diploids, the results support the theory that the A genomes of wheat have experienced reticulate evolution owing to introgression. The B and G genomes of tetraploid domesticated wheats form a clade with Ae. speltoides in which the B genome diverged first and the G genome more recently. It was demonstrated that the complete ETS sequences of the Triticeae yield coherent phylogenetic information. The ETS is a useful tool for studying the phylogeny of closely related species.

Breeding gain and changes in morphotype of Nordic spring wheat (1901-1993) under contrasting environments

August 2003


12 Reads

Phenotypic diversity among 75 Nordic spring wheat cultivars was assessed in a glasshouse experiment, in which plots had no fertilizer or received 14-3-23 NPK plus Mg. On average, the fertilizer application delayed flowering by one day, shortened plant height (PH), as well as enhanced the number of fertile tillers (NFT), fresh and dry straw weight (FSW and DSW, respectively), but influenced negatively the dry matter content in the straw (DMCS) and the number of kernels per spike (K/S). The cultivar-by-fertilizer interaction did not affect significantly days to flowering (DF), PH, FSW, DSW, DMCS, thousand kernel weight, and K/S. Only NFT was significantly affected by this interaction. There were significant differences among cultivars for all characteristics, and the breeding gains were significant for improving earliness (as determined by DF), shortening PH, as well as for reducing DSW and DMCS irrespective of the environment. On average, FSW was low in newer cultivars grown in high inputs, while NFT was low in newer cultivars when grown in low inputs. The country of origin affected significantly DF, PH, DMCS, K/S, and 1000-kernel weight. On average, cultivars developed for Finland and Norway were significantly taller, and had higher DMCS. Finnish cultivars also flowered 1 or 2 days earlier and showed higher K/S than cultivars adopted in southern Scandinavia or Norway.

Evaluation of Genetic Diversity Among Bulgarian Winter Wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) Varieties During the Period 1925–2003 Using Microsatellites

November 2006


241 Reads

Simple sequence repeats (SSRs) were used to study the genetic diversity within old and modern Bulgarian winter wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) varieties released in 20th century. A set of 91 varieties were screened by 19 wheat microsatellite markers (WMS), covering 17 wheat chromosomes, and one secalin-specific marker for rye chromosome arm 1RS. A total of 136 allelic variants were detected at 22 loci, ranging from 2 to 11, with an average of 6.8 alleles per marker. For 7 markers, null alleles were detected. The occurrence of rare alleles (frequency <2%) was observed for 13 markers. The polymorphism information content (PIC) values of the markers ranged from 0.10 (WMS0165 on 4AS) to 0.81 (WMS0437 on 7DL) with an average of 0.51. Approximately 74% of the varieties, mostly non-commercial, showed heterogeneity, with an average level of 10.1%. For the majority of markers, the relative frequencies of alleles varied considerably among different groups of varieties, revealing the effects of different selection between breeding centres. Some alleles, present in old genotypes, were lost, and new alleles have been introduced into modern varieties. Genetic diversity values over different periods of release were high, starting at 0.64 for varieties developed before 1960 to reach 0.71 in 1990s, revealing no declining trends in the diversity due to breeding activity. The cluster analysis discriminated all varieties (except for two) and revealed distinct groups of old and modern varieties, released from the main breeding centres in Northern, Southern and Western Bulgaria.

Analysis of Wheat Disease Resistance Data Originating from Screenings of Gatersleben Genebank Accessions during 1933 and 1992

September 2006


59 Reads

Series of 10,348 accessions belonging to 21 species (hexaploid, tetraploid, diploid) of the genus Triticum and 489 accessions belonging to 20 species of the genus Aegilops were scored for disease resistance during a period of 60years. Tests were performed at the seedling stage for powdery mildew (Erysiphe graminis DC. f. sp. tritici March.), leaf rust (Puccinia recondita Rob. ex Desm. f. sp. tritici Erikss.), stripe rust (Puccinia striiformis West. f. sp. tritici Erikss.) and eyespot (Pseudocercosporella herpotrichoides (Fron.) Deight.) but also at the adult plant stage considering powdery mildew, leaf rust, stripe rust, eyespot and glume blotch (Septoria nodorum Berk.). About 150,000 disease scores recorded on index cards using different scoring scales were transferred to the computer, converted into a 1–9 scale and used to summarise the results. Within the genus Triticum 20% of the material analysed was classified as heterogeneous. For the accessions without detectable segregation a large variability for resistance/susceptibility was detected. At the adult plant stage resistant accessions without visible infections were identified for all diseases. The percentages of resistant accessions at that growth stage were always higher than the ones found in the material tested at the seedling stage. The probability for finding resistant material was shown to be highest in the diploid species ( > 50%) but decreased with increasing ploidy level to about 10% in the hexaploids. For Aegilops it was shown that most of the accessions were homogeneous and highly resistant against powdery mildew (seedling and adult plant stage), leaf rust (adult plant stage) and eyespot (seedling and adult plant stage/natural infection). The data obtained for the individual accessions are available via Internet (

Results of activities to maintain landraces and other material in some European countries in situ before 1945 and what we may learn from them

August 1996


20 Reads

All three recommendations to maintain landraces in European countries, given in 1927: 1. maintenance by traditional farmers, 2. maintenance by school personnel and pupils, and 3. maintenance by small agricultural institutions, were disregarded. The present outcome: maintenance by genebanks, which often grow landraces and improved cultivars of one crop next to each other, and which often are part of a large agricultural research institute, was advised against.The above observation may be of value to those who at present advocate maintenance of landraces by traditional farmers in developing countries.It is recommended that landraces should be collected and maintained in genebanks as this will result in a partial loss of the material, whereas on farm maintenance (in situ conservation) would lead to a complete loss.

Retrospecting genetic variation of Finnish oat (Avena sativa) landraces and observations on revived lines grown prior to 1957

January 2000


38 Reads

An aged seed sample of a single oat landrace resulted in four plants when germinated. The plants differed from each other morphologically and genetically. They represented four grain types, three lemma colours, three avenin and three residual grain protein patterns and two molar ratios of C18:C16 fatty acids. These old oats grew high under current conditions and some also had yielding potential. Landraces with wide residual to avenin protein ratios would have been good sources in breeding food cereals for coeliac patients. Literature data since the 1700s indicate that Finnish oat landraces included morphological mixtures. Some were intentionally mixed. As also noted for Finnish barley landraces, oat landraces appear to have approached mixtures of genetically unique plants. Several reasons for the variation are presented. Active replacement of landraces (genetic polymorphism) with only a few pure-line cultivars was encouraged by authorities during the Mendelian period. Genetic variation was lost earliest in oats among Finnish cereal landraces. The proportion of oat landraces declined from 100% in 1902 to 34.4% in 1922 and to 0.2% in 1955. Genetic conservation did not occur in time, resulting from lack of foresight by authorities.

Changes in the diversity and geographic distribution of cultivated millet ( Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.) and sorghum ( Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench) varieties in Niger between 1976 and 2003

March 2009


981 Reads

Changes in the diversity of landraces in centres of diversity of cultivated plants need to be assessed in order to monitor and conserve agrobioversity—a key-element of sustainable agriculture. This notably applies in tropical areas where factors such as increased populations, climate change and shifts in cropping systems are hypothesized to cause varietal erosion. To assess varietal erosion of staple crops in a country subjected to various anthropogenic and natural environmental changes, we carried out a study based on a comparison of the diversity of pearl millet and sorghum varieties collected in 79 villages spanning the entire cereal-growing zone of Niger over a 26year period (1976–2003). For these two crops, the number, name and type of varieties according to important traits for farmers were considered at different spatial scales (country, region, village) at the two collection dates. The results confirmed the high diversity of millet and sorghum varieties in Niger. No erosion of varietal diversity was noted on a national scale during the period covered. Some changes were observed but were limited to the geographical distribution of certain varieties. This highlights that farmers’ management can preserve the diversity of millet and sorghum varieties in Niger despite recurrent and severe drought periods and major social changes. It also indicates that rainfed cereal cropping systems in Niger should remain to be based on millet and sorghum, while reinforcing farmers’ seed systems.

Literatur über archäologische Kulturpflanzenreste (1977/1978)

January 1979


4 Reads

In Fortsetzung von Bibliographien ber archologische Kulturpflanzenreste wurde die einschlgige Literatur der Jahre 1977/78 zusammengestellt und der Inhalt der erfaten 109 Arbeiten kurz kommentiert.The publications of 1977 and 1978 on archaeological remains of cultivated plants were put together and the contents of the 109 references briefly discussed. . 1977 1978 . 109 .

Literatur über archäologische Kulturpflanzenreste (1978/1979)

February 1980


5 Reads

In Fortsetzung von Bibliographien ber archologische Kulturpflanzenreste wurde die einschlgige Literatur der Jahre 1978/1979 zusammengestellt und der Inhalt der erfaten 115 Arbeiten kurz kommentiert.The publications of 1978 and 1979 on archaeological remains of cultivated plants were put together and the contents of the 115 references briefly discussed. . 1978 1979 . 115 .

Research in plant genetic resources 1978–2003: General index of the second 25 volumes 'Kulturpflanze'/'GRACE'

February 2004


2,092 Reads

A general index of the second 25 volumes of ''Kulturpflanze'' 1978–1990/''GRACE'' (Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution) 1992–2003 is provided. Its predecessor covered the first 25 volumes of the periodical ''Die Kulturpflanze'' and appeared in 1977. The index can be considered as a unique source for research in plant genetic resources.

Top-cited authors