Physical mapping of 18S-5.8S-26S and 5S ribosomal RNA gene families in three important vetches (Vicia species) and their allied taxa constituting three species complexes
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The most-important vetch species, Vicia narbonensis (narbon vetch, section Faba), Vicia villosa (hairy vetch, section Cracca) and Vicia sativa (common vetch, section Vicia) and their close relatives (often difficult to circumscribe into distinct taxa) constitute respectively, Narbonensis, Villosa and Sativa species complexes in the genus Vicia. The distribution of the 18S-5.8S-26S (18S-26S) and 5S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene families on the chromosomes of 19 (2n=2x=10,12,14) of the 24 species and subspecies belonging to the three species complexes, and Vicia bithynica (2n=12, section Faba) and Vicia hybrida (2n=12, section Hypechusa) was studied by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with pTa 71 (18S-26S rDNA) and pTa 794 (5S rDNA) DNA clones. Computer – aided chromosome analysis was performed on the basis of chromosome length, the arm-length ratio and the position of the hybridization signals. The positions of the four (2+2) signals of the two rRNA gene families were similar between each of the three, as well as two subspecies of V. narbonensis and Vicia johannis, respectively. Two major 18S-26S rDNA loci were found in the nucleolus organiser regions (NORs) of each of the species except V. hybrida, where it was present in two out of four SAT chromosomes. In addition to major NORs, two minor loci have been physically mapped at the centromeric regions of chromosomes of group 1 in Vicia amphicarpa, Vicia macrocarpa and V. sativa, and two NORs of group 5 in V. hybrida, and on the long arms of group 4 in V. bithynica. Two or four 5S rDNA loci, observed in the short arms of groups 2–4 and 5, and 18S-26S rDNA loci were located in different chromosomes of all the species within the Narbonensis and Villosa species complexes, and Vicia angustifolia of the Sativa species complex. In the remaining six species of the Sativa species complex, and V. bithynica and V. hybrida, the two or four 5S rDNA sites were present in chromosomes which harbor 18S-26S rRNA genes. The tandemly repeated 5S rDNA sites, located at the proximal part of the long arm of groups 3–5, were diagnostic for V. angustifolia, Vicia cordata, Vicia incisa, V. macrocarpa, Vicia nigra and V. sativa of the Sativa species complex. In V. amphicarpa of the same complex, the tandem repeats were located at the distal part of the long arms of group 3. Variability in the number, size and location of two ribosomal DNA probes could generally distinguish species within the Narbonensis and Sativa species complex, V. bithynica and V. hybrida. With respect to the four species of the Villosa species complex the karyotypes could not be identified individually on the basis of the distribution of two ribosomal gene families in three out of seven pairs of chromosomes.
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