, Volume 54, Issue 6, pp 1351-1365
Date: 03 Jan 2007

Evaluation of genetic diversity in Turkish melons (Cucumis melo L.) based on phenotypic characters and RAPD markers

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Abstract

The genetic relationships among 56 melon (Cucumis melo L.) genotypes collected from various parts of Turkey were determined by comparing their phenotypic and molecular traits with those of 23 local and foreign melon genotypes to investigate the taxonomic relationships and genetic variation of Turkish melon germplasm. Sixty-one phenotypic characters and 109 polymorphic RAPD markers obtained from 33 primers were used to define the genetic similarity among the melon genotypes by dendrograms or two and three dimensional scaling. There were high correlations (r ≥ 0.97) among the four resulting matrices used in molecular characterization. The correlations between phenotypic (Euclidean) and molecular Euclidean, Jaccard, Simple matching, and Nei analyses were r = 0.41, r = −0.40, r = −0.43 and r = −0.40, respectively. Related genotypes or genotypes collected from similar regions were partitioned to similar clusters. Both analyses (phenotypic and molecular) indicated that non-sweet melon types were dissimilar from sweet types and diversity of Turkish melon genotypes was higher than that of sweet foreign cultivars examined, but similar to that of the reference accessions employed. It was also observed that sweet Turkish melon genotypes belonging to groups inodorus and group cantalupensis were highly variable and could have intermated or have crossed with other non-sweet types.