Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 270, Issue 1–2, pp 59–74 | Cite as

Evidence of intra-varietal genetic variability in the vegetatively propagated crop oca (Oxalis tuberosa Mol.) in the Andean traditional farming system

  • A. PissardEmail author
  • J. A. Rojas-Beltran
  • A.-M. Faux
  • S. Paulet
  • P. Bertin


Oxalis tuberosa is a vegetatively propagated tuber crop in the Andes. The peasants cultivate a great number of varieties for which genetic homogeneity has never been demonstrated. Morphological descriptors and ISSR markers were used to determine the intra-varietal diversity and the influence of the mode of conservation ex-situ vs in-situ. Molecular markers revealed an intra-varietal genetic diversity attesting that oca varieties are not pure clones. The morphological analysis was congruent with the peasant classification, contrary to the molecular markers. The comparison between both conservation strategies revealed a larger intra-varietal diversity in in-situ conditions and a genetic divergence between plants. The traditional practices are likely to be responsible of the intra-varietal polymorphism since the oca is propagated almost exclusively vegetatively. At the conservation level, differences could be explained by the sampling methods. A more integrated approach between genebanks and in-situ conservation is recommended to maintain the genetic resources of the species.


ISSR oca Oxalis tuberosa genetic resources conservation 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. Pissard
    • 1
    Email author
  • J. A. Rojas-Beltran
    • 2
  • A.-M. Faux
    • 1
  • S. Paulet
    • 1
  • P. Bertin
    • 1
  1. 1.Département de Biologie appliquée et Productions agricoles, Ecophysiologie et Amélioration VégétaleUniversité catholique de LouvainLouvain-La-NeuveBelgium
  2. 2.Fundación PROINPA (Promoción e Investigación de Productos Andinos)CochabambaBolivia

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