Genetic diversity changes and relationships in spring barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) germplasm of Nordic and Baltic areas as shown by SSR markers
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To examine changes in the level of and pattern in variability in 197 Nordic and Baltic spring barley cultivars over time we used 21 mapped barley simple sequence repeats (SSRs). A total number of 191 alleles were found from 22 SSR loci. The number of alleles per locus ranged from 2 to 23, with average of 8.63 107 alleles were rare (frequency <0.05) among the cultivars and only one allele was frequently observed (frequency >0.95). The gene diversity between loci in Nordic and Baltic material varied between 0.033 and 0.891. Average gene diversity was 0.623. The SSR data separated two-rowed and six-rowed cultivars. According to analysis of molecular variance (AMOVA) differentiation in two-rowed vs six-rowed accounted for 23.6% of the total variation. Overall no significant decrease of average gene diversity over time could be found. However, differences were observed when spring barleys from northern (north of ∼58°) and southern (south of ∼58°) parts of the Nordic and Baltic area were compared. For the southern ecogeographical region significant decrease of genetic diversity was observed in the middle of the 20th century, whereas no significant changes in the northern part were found. We found larger differentiation between modern and old cultivars in the South compared to the ones in North parts of the region. The magnitude of changes in genetic diversity differed also with the country of origin. Danish cultivars had a significant decrease in diversity in the middle of century, whereas changes in Finland, Norway and Sweden were not significant.
KeywordsCultivated barley Genetic erosion Hordeum vulgare L. Microsatellite variation
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We thank the Nordic and Baltic plant breeding companies and gene banks for providing plant material. We thank also Dr. Jan-Eric Englund, Alnarp, for the help with randomisation tests in MATLAB programme. This study is a part of the project “Genetic Diversity in Nordic-Baltic crops—a model study of genetic erosion in barley”, supported by the Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry. Financial support to the analysis of SSR markers was obtained also from the “Einar och Inga Nilssons Stiftelse” and Nilsson-Ehle foundation.
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