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Genetic variability in plantago species in relation to their ecology 3. genetic structure of populations of plantago major plantago lanceolata and plantago coronopus



Genetic variability in plantago species in relation to their ecology 3. genetic structure of populations of plantago major plantago lanceolata and plantago coronopus



Theoretical and Applied Genetics 75(3): 518-528



Populations of the three Plantago species P. major, P. lanceolata and P. coronopus were scored for allozyme variability. They showed normal variability levels compared with other, similar plant species. Differentiation among populations appeared to be rather low in comparison with other species, probably due to a considerable amount of long distance seed transport. In order to be able to make an analysis of small-scale gene flow, all (sub)populations were critically checked for the existence of population structure equilibrium. The allozyme variation was tested for neutrality by testing homogeneity of F values among loci: between populations (Lewontin-Krakauer test) and within populations. No systematic deviations from the prediction of the neutral theory could be established. From the population structure analyses, little gene flow in the species P. major (with high selfing levels) and P. coronopus could be concluded, whereas P. lanceolata showed relatively high levels of gene flow. The degree of homozygosity in the latter species was too high to explain with the available data. In P. coronopus, on the other hand, an unusually high number of heterozygotes were observed.

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