Genomic analysis in three Hylocereus species and their progeny: evidence for introgressive hybridization and gene flow
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Interest in vine cacti of the genus Hylocereus (Cactaceae) has grown markedly due to their high economic potential as exotic fruit crops. Thus, we investigate the genomic and genetic characteristics of 18 accessions belonging to three Hylocereus species, from which were produced eight progeny from self-pollination and 51 interspecific-homoploid and -interploid hybrids. We reported ploidy estimation, allele frequencies, polymorphic information content (PIC) and genetic relationships observed among the Hylocereus species and their progeny. The progeny were diploid, triploid, tetraploid, pentaploid, or hexaploid. Each primer combination used in this work amplified different sets of restriction fragments ranging from 74 to 102 bands. Among the total number of bands observed for the Hylocereus accessions and their progeny, 97.5 and 98.1 %, respectively, were polymorphic. The variability of PIC between primers, species and hybrids suggested high heterozygosity and gene flow between them. In addition, amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers were used to successfully identify one of the H. megalanthus accessions beforehand as the unknown male progenitor of the allotriploid S-75. AFLP markers demonstrate the efficacy for assessing genetic relationships and introgression; and provide strong support for the pursuit of additional breeding programs of these fruit crop.
KeywordsAllele frequency Amplified fragment length polymorphism Genome size Ploidy Molecular markers Paternity
The authors gratefully acknowledge to Prof. G. Grafi for instructive discussions and valuable comments on the manuscript. We want to extend our gratitude to Mr. J. Mouyal and to the late Dr. B. Schneider for their valuable assistance, and to Mr. P. Martin for editing the manuscript.
This work was partial supported by Ben Gurion University of the Negev at the Kreitman School for Advanced Graduate Studies (Zin Fellowship to A.C.); and at the Albert Katz International School for Desert Studies (Doctoral fellowship to A.C.).
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