Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution

, Volume 40, Issue 3, pp 165–170 | Cite as

On the specific status of Gossypium lanceolatum Todaro

  • Curt L. Brubaker
  • Jonathan F. Wendel
Short Communication


Gossypium lanceolatum comprises a group of laciniate-leaved commensal cottons from the Mexican states of Oaxaca and Guerrero. This geographically restricted, morphologically distinct group of perennial cottons has been considered conspecific with G. hirsutum, with which it is sympatric. In addition to its questionable specific status, G. lanceolatum has added importance because it represents the focal point of an hypothesis that New World tetraploid Gossypium have a polyphyletic origin—an hypothesis that conflicts with the more widely accepted view that New World tetraploid Gossypium have a monophyletic origin. To reassess the systematic and genetic relationships between G. lanceolatum and G. hirsutum, historical data were reconsidered in the context of recently published molecular marker based data. Chloroplast and nuclear DNA markers fail to discriminate G. lanceolatum from G. hirsutum, uniting both into a single phylogenetic lineage. A new analysis of allelic variability at 50 allozyme loci in 11 G. lanceolatum and 527 G. hirsutum accessions demonstrates that G. lanceolatum has no unique alleles relative to G. hirsutum. Genetic identity estimates were uniformly high (> 0.96) among G. lanceolatum and geographically adjacent, mainland Mesoamerican groups of G. hirsutum accessions. Multivariate analyses demonstrated that G. lanceolatum is genetically embedded within geographically adjacent populations of G. hirsutum. These data, in conjunction with the complete interfertility between the two taxa and previous evidence for conspecificity, lead to the conclusion that G. lanceolatum does not warrant specific status. Rather, it is more properly recognized as a locally developed, domesticated form of G. hirsutum, i.e., G. hirsutum race ‘palmeri’.

Key words

crop evolution Gossypium hirsutum Gossypium lanceolatum allozymes polyploidy 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Curt L. Brubaker
    • 1
  • Jonathan F. Wendel
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of BotanyIowa State UniversityAmesUSA

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