, Volume 49, Issue 4, pp 439-448

Genetic diversity of winter wheat in Shaanxi province, China, and other common wheat germplasm pools

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Cultivated Chinese wheat germplasm has been a valuable genetic resourcein international plant breeding. Landraces endemic to China are a geneticresource that is distinct from other wheat germplasm. Patterns of geneticdiversity among cultivated Chinese accessions and relationship to othergermplasm pools are unknown, despite the proven value and potential novelty. Theobjective of this work was to determine the level of genetic diversity withinimproved Chinese germplasm in the context of several other wheat germplasmpools. We analyzed a set of improved accessions cultivated from the 1940s to the1990s in Shaanxi province, China, using six simple sequence repeat (SSR) primerpairs and 30 restriction fragment length polymorphism - probe enzymecombinations (RFLP-PEC) previously used to characterize 21 geographically basedgermplasm pools. Shaanxi germplasm consists of three groups based on foreignintroductions from Italy, Australia, Denmark, and Russia. There was a decreasein genetic diversity among Shaanxi accessions cultivated in the 1970s and 1980sto the 1990s, and accession classifications based on primary decade ofcultivation were found to be significantly undifferentiated. The analysis of themean genetic distance among 22 geographically based pools of germplasm suggestsseveral regions are significantly undifferentiated. A vast majority of the totalamount of variation was found within pools; therefore, pools appear to belargely differentiated based on small differences in band relative frequency andfew if any unique bands. Previous studies have identified some Chinese landracepools as morphologically and genetically unique. The Shaanxi pool does not havethe same unique morphological or genetic features, nor is it more similar to thelandrace pools than other improved germplasm pools.