Morphometric variation, genetic diversity and allelic polymorphism of an underutilised species Thaumatococcus daniellii population in Southwestern Nigeria
Genetic diversity among Thaumatococcus daniellii populations in the southwestern region of Nigeria were assessed using morphometric and molecular markers to determine the population structure and existing genetic relationship for its improvement, conservation and sustainable utilisation. Populations from five locations in each of the six states were used for the study. Morphometric data were collected on folia characters and analysed for variability. Genome DNA was isolated from the plant leaf and amplified by polymerase chain reaction with inter-simple sequence repeat markers (ISSR) to determine the allelic polymorphism, marker effectiveness and genetic relationship of the population. The results showed significant variations in petiole length and leaf dimensions of the populations within and across the states. These morphometric traits are the major parameters that delimit the populations and they correlated significantly at P≤0.05. Analysis of the electrophoregram showed that the ISSR markers are effective for the diversity study. A total of 136 loci were amplified with an average of 7.16 loci per marker, 63.2% of the loci were polymorphic. The Principal Coordinate Analysis revealed that seven factors accounted for 81.6% of the variation and the dendrogram separated the populations into two major groups at a genetic distance of 10 (about 90% similarity) with sub-groups and clusters. Most populations within the state had a high degree of similarity, nonetheless, strong genetic relationship exists among populations from different states. The close relationship between populations across the states suggests a common progenitor, which are likely separated by ecological or geographical isolation mechanisms.
Material and Methods
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