Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 217, Issue 1–2, pp 31–42 | Cite as

Distribution of a 375 bp repeat sequence inAllium (Alliaceae) as revealed by FISH

  • M. Stevenson
  • S. J. Armstrong
  • G. H. Jones
  • B. V. Ford-Lloyd


Information about evolutionary relationships between species of the genusAllium is desirable in order to facilitate breeding programmes. One approach is to study the distribution of repetitive DNA sequences among species thought on taxonomic grounds, to be closely related. We have used fluorescent in-situ hybridisation (FISH) to examine seven species within sect.Cepa of the genus (A. altaicum, A. cepa, A. fistulosum, A. galanthum, A. pskemense, A. oschaninii andA. vavilovii), one species from sect.Rhizirideum (A. roylei), two species from sect.Allium (A. sativum andA. porrum) and one species from sect.Schoenoprasum (A. schoenoprasum). Each species was probed using a 375 bp repeat sequence isolated fromA. cepa (Barnes & al. 1985), which was generated and labelled by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). No signals were detected in anyAllium species not belonging to sect.Cepa with the exception ofA. roylei, whose designation in sect.Rhizirideum is now questioned. Within sect.Cepa the probe was found to hybridize to the ‘terminal’ regions of the chromosome arms of all the species examined. In addition a number of interstitial bands were detected. Use of FISH reveals a more detailed map of the location of the repeat sequences than has previously been obtained by C-banding and other staining procedures. The distribution of the terminal and interstitial sites when compared, allow us to identify three species groups namely,A. altaicum andA. fistulosum; A. cepa, A. roylei, A. oschaninii andA. vavilovii; andA. galanthum andA. pskemense.

Key words

Alliaceae Allium Fluorescent in-situ hybridisation cytotaxonomy telomeric repeat 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Stevenson
    • 1
  • S. J. Armstrong
    • 1
  • G. H. Jones
    • 1
  • B. V. Ford-Lloyd
    • 1
  1. 1.The University of BirminghamEdgbaston, BirminghamUK

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