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Genetic diversity inferred from AFLP fingerprinting in populations of Onosma echioides (Boraginaceae) from serpentine and calcareous soils

Genetic diversity inferred from AFLP fingerprinting in populations of Onosma echioides (Boraginaceae) from serpentine and calcareous soils

Plant Biosystems 140(2): 211-219

Onosma echioides is a non-obligate serpentinophytic borage occurring discontinuously on calcareous and serpentine outcrops at the northwest limit of its range. Mean concentrations of Ca, Mg and heavy metals in root and shoot samples of eight populations from the two soil types were first determined. Subsequently, the genetic polymorphism of the same accessions was estimated by means of Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphism (AFLP) fingerprinting technique. Root and shoot samples from serpentine outcrops showed higher levels of Ni, Cr and Mg, and lower Ca/Mg ratios compared with those from calcareous soils. Based on 353 polymorphic AFLP bands, the two edaphic groups of populations showed comparable levels of genetic diversity. A remarkable genetic differentiation between populations and a high level of within-population genetic variance were found. Results of Mantel's test supported a significant correlation between genetic and geographical distances, while no difference in relation to the edaphic factor was detected. Molecular data suggested isolation as the key factor shaping the infraspecific genetic structure of O. echioides, which may be in relation with the short-distance, zoochorous systems of seed dispersal and pollination of this species.

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Accession: 012791900

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DOI: 10.1080/11263500600756660

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