, Volume 282, Issue 1-2, pp 71-86,
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What phylogeny and gene genealogy analyses reveal about homoplasy in citrus microsatellite alleles

Abstract

Sixty-five microsatellite alleles amplified from ancestral citrus accessions classified in three separate genera were evaluated for sequence polymorphism to establish the basis of inter- and intra-allelic genetic variation, evaluate the extent of size homoplasy, and determine an appropriate model (stepwise or infinite allele) for analysis of citrus microsatellite alleles. Sequences for each locus were aligned and subsequently used to determine relationships between alleles of different taxa via parsimony. Interallelic size variation at each SSR locus examined was due to changes in repeat copy number with one exception. Sequencing these alleles uncovered new distinct point mutations in the microsatellite region and the region flanking the microsatellite. Several of the point mutations were found to be genus, species, or allele specific, and some mutations were informative about the inferred evolutionary relationships among alleles. Overall, homoplasy was observed in alleles from all three loci, where the core microsatellite repeat was changed causing alleles of the same size class to be identical in state but not identical by descent. Because nearly all changes in allele size (with one exception) were due to expansion or contraction of the repeat motif, this suggests that a stepwise mutation model, which assumes homoplasy may occur, would be the most appropriate for analyzing Citrus SSR data. The collected data indicate that microsatellites can be a useful tool for evaluating Citrus species and two related genera since repeat motifs were reasonably well retained. However, this work also demonstrated that the number of microsatellite alleles is clearly an underestimate of the number of sequence variants present.