Economic Botany

, Volume 44, Supplement 3, pp 28–38 | Cite as

Biochemical evidence bearing on the domestication ofPhaseolus (Fabaceae) beans

  • Paul Gepts
Article

Abstract

The genusPhaseolus (Fabaceae) consists of some 50 species, all of which are distributed in the Americas. Four of these contain cultigens.P. vulgaris (common bean),P. lunatus (lima bean),P. acutifolius (tepary bean),P. coccineus subsp.coccineus (runner bean); andP. coccineus subsp.polyanthus (no English vernacular name). Biochemical markers—phaseolin seed storage protein and isozymes—have provided new evidence on the organization of the first three species. Domestication has possibly caused a strong reduction in genetic diversity inP. vulgaris andP. acutifolius. BothP. vulgaris andP. lunatus cultivars result from at least two independent domestications, in Mesoamerica and in the Andes. These two species consist of two gene pools, each of which includes wild ancestors and their respective cultivated descendants. Our findings suggest the need for additional emphasis on genetic conservation of wild ancestors and their use in breeding programs and for a comparison of inter-gene pool vs. intra-gene pool crosses in breeding programs.

Informatión bioquímica acerca de 1a domesticación de los frijolesPhaseolus

Resumen

El géneroPhaseolus consta de unas 50 especies, distribuidas exclusivamente en las Américas; cuatro de estas especies incluyen a formas cultivadas:P. Vulgaris (frijol común),P. lunatus (frijol lima),P. acutifolius (frijol tepari o escomite),P. coccineus subsp. coccineus (frijol ayocote), yP. Coccineus subsp.polyanthus (frijol acalete). El uso de marcadores bioquímicos—faseolina e isozimas—ha producido nueva información acerca de la distribución de la variabilidad genética en las tres primeras especies. El proceso de domesticación causó una reducción marcada en la variabilidad genética para faseolina enP. vulgaris yP. acutifolius. Las formas cultivadas deP. vulgaris yP. lunatus resultaron de por lo menos dos domesticaciones distintas, en Mesoamérica y en los Andes. Estas dos especies constan de dos grupos de genotipos, cada cual incluye tanto a las formas silvestres ancestrales como a sus progenies cultivadas respectivas. Nuestros resultados sugieren que se ponga más enfasis tanto en la recolección y la preservación del germoplasma silvestre ancestral como en su uso en programas de mejoramiento; también sugieren que se compare en forma más detenida las cruzas entre grupos de genotipos con las cruzas adentro de estos grupos.

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Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul Gepts
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Agronomy and Range ScienceUniversity of CaliforniaDavis

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