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Chromosomal and molecular rearrangements in somatic hybrids between tetraploid Medicago sativa and diploid Medicago falcata

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Abstract

 The aim of this study was to produce somatic hybrids between tetraploid (2n=4x=32) M. sativa and diploid (2n=2x=16) M.  falcata and analyse their genomic structure. Protoplasts from genotypes selected for regeneration ability from the cultivar Rangelander of M. sativa and Wisfal-1 of M. falcata were electrofused. Seven somatic hybrid calli were produced and one of them regenerated plants. The hybrid nature of these plants and their genetic composition were assessed with morphological, cytological, and molecular analyses. The resulting plants were hyper-aneuploid (2n=33) and contained one extra long chromosome, indicating that a translocation had taken place. The presence of both types of parental sequences in the RAPDs analysis confirmed the true hybrid nature of the plants. Rearrangements within the parental genomes and the presence of somaclonal variation among hybrid plants were observed through an RFLP analysis of the nucleolar organizing region (NOR). The possible causes for the gross genomic alterations, and the suitability of this method for transferring useful agronomic traits from wild species to cultivated alfalfa, are discussed.

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Received: 6 March 1997 / Accpted: 17 July 1997

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Crea, F., Calderini, O., Nenz, E. et al. Chromosomal and molecular rearrangements in somatic hybrids between tetraploid Medicago sativa and diploid Medicago falcata. Theor Appl Genet 95, 1112–1118 (1997). https://doi.org/10.1007/s001220050670

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  • Key words Somatic hybridization
  • rDNA locus
  • Chromosome rearrangements
  • Gene transfer
  • Forage legumes