Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 298, Issue 1, pp 193–203 | Cite as

Biosystematic study of the genus Berberis L. (Berberidaceae) in Khorassan, NE Iran

  • Najmeh Sodagar
  • Ahmad Reza BahramiEmail author
  • Farshid Memariani
  • Hamid Ejtehadi
  • Jamil Vaezi
  • Ahmad Reza Khosravi
Original Article


Four species of the genus Berberis L. have been reported from different regions, including Khorassan provinces. In this article, a revision of this genus in Khorassan provinces is presented. For better validation of the results, morphological, palynological, chromosomal and molecular studies were conducted on specimens collected from Khorassan provinces and preserved in FUMH and TARI herbaria. Morphological study resulted in recognition of three species of Berberis, from which two species are new records for Khorassan. Four unknown new taxa with new morphological characters were also identified, but left for further analysis because of the high percentage of polyploidy and hybridization in this genus. In order to analyze morphological data, 35 OTUs were provided and scored using the distance method and PCoA. The shape and size of pollen grains were nearly equal in the examined taxa, and there were no obvious differences between them. Chromosomal examination indicated tetraploidy (2n = 4x = 56) in all of the studied taxa. Molecular studies were accomplished by RAPD and sequencing of the ITS region to construct a framework of relationships between the taxa. Molecular studies emphasized the difference in the four unknown taxa from others. The total evidence indicates that Berberis L. shows a high percentage of polyploidy and hybridization.


Berberis Iran Berberidaceae Taxonomy Palynology Cytotaxonomy 



We would like to thank Mr. M.R. Joharchi (Herbarium of FUM) for his kind technical support and John Hunnex (Natural History Museum, London) for providing us with nice pictures of their samples. This project was partly supported by the Ferdowsi University Research Office.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Najmeh Sodagar
    • 1
  • Ahmad Reza Bahrami
    • 1
    • 3
    Email author
  • Farshid Memariani
    • 2
  • Hamid Ejtehadi
    • 1
  • Jamil Vaezi
    • 4
  • Ahmad Reza Khosravi
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Biology, Faculty of ScienceFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran
  2. 2.Department of Botany, Research Institute for Plant ScienceFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran
  3. 3.Cell and Molecular Research Group, Institute of BiotechnologyFerdowsi University of MashhadMashhadIran
  4. 4.Department of Biology, Faculty of ScienceShahid Chamran University of AhvazAhvazIran
  5. 5.Department of Biology, Faculty of ScienceShiraz UniversityShirazIran

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