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Genetic diversity and relationships in accessions from different cultivar groups and origins in the tree tomato (Solanum betaceum Cav.)

Abstract

Tree tomato (Solanum betaceum) is an Andean small tree cultivated for its juicy fruits. Little information is available on the characterization of genetic resources and breeding of this neglected crop. We have studied the molecular diversity with AFLP markers using 11 combinations of primers of a collection of 25 S. betaceum accessions belonging to four cultivar groups, most of which had been previously morphologically characterized, as well as one accession of the wild relative S. cajanumense. A total of 197 AFLP fragments were scored, of which 84 (43 %) were polymorphic. When excluding S. cajanumense from the analysis, the number of polymorphic AFLP fragments was 78 (40 %). Unique AFLP fingerprints were obtained for every accession, but no AFLP fragments specific and universal to any of the four cultivar groups were found. The total genetic diversity (H T ) of cultivated accessions was H T  = 0.2904, while for cultivar groups it ranged from H T  = 0.1846 in the orange group to H T  = 0.2498 in the orange pointed group. Genetic differentiation among cultivar groups (G ST ) was low (G ST  = 0.2248), which was matched by low values of genetic distance among cultivar groups. The diversity of collections from Ecuador, which we hypothesize is a center of diversity for tree tomato, was similar to that from other origins (H T  = 0.2884 and H T  = 0.2645, respectively). Cluster and PCoA analyses clearly separated wild S. cajanumense from the cultivated species. However, materials of different cultivar groups and origins were intermingled in both analyses. The Mantel test correlation coefficient of the matrices of morphological and AFLP distances was low (−0.024) and non-significant. Overall, the results show that a wide diversity is present in each of the cultivar groups, indicate that Ecuador may be regarded as a center of accumulation of diversity for this crop, and confirm that AFLP and morphological characterization data are complementary. The results obtained are of value for the conservation of genetic resources and breeding of tree tomato, as an assessment of the genetic diversity and relationships among different cultivar groups and geographic origins is obtained.

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Acknowledgments

This work was partially financed by the Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación (RF2008-00008-00-00) as well as by the Secretaría Nacional de Educación Superior, Ciencia, Tecnología e Innovación from Ecuador (SENESCYT).

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Correspondence to Jaime Prohens.

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Acosta-Quezada, P.G., Vilanova, S., Martínez-Laborde, J.B. et al. Genetic diversity and relationships in accessions from different cultivar groups and origins in the tree tomato (Solanum betaceum Cav.). Euphytica 187, 87–97 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10681-012-0736-7

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Keywords

  • AFLPs
  • Conservation
  • Cultivar groups
  • Genetic resources
  • Solanum betaceum
  • Tree tomato