DNA fingerprinting using random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers was employed to investigate the genetic variation within and among populations of Miscanthus Anderss. sinensis var. condensatus (Hack.) Makino, an apomictic grass distributed along the coasts of Taiwan and Ryukyu Islands. A total of 250 plants from three Taiwanese populations (Southeast Coast, Orchid Islet, and Green Islet) and two populations from Ryukyu (Ishigaki and Amami-O-Shima Islets) were sampled. The amplified products of 40 random primers showed monomorphic banding patterns within all populations as well as among the three populations from Taiwan. Low genetic variation (with only two polymorphic loci), but significant differentiation, was detected between populations from Taiwan and Ryukyu (φCT = 0.864) and between populations (φST= 1.0) from lshigaki and Amami-O-Shima Islets. In contrast, a high level of variation was exhibited in the outcrossing Miscanthus sinensis var. glaber (Nakai) Li. In addition to apomictic reproduction, low genetic variation across populations of M. sinensis var. condensatus may be a result of high salinity acting as a selective agent. With the cost of reduced genetic heterogeneity, apomixis may have provided a mechanism for avoiding the transmission of endophytic fungi. The phytogeographic pattern of M. sinensis var. condensatus, as reflected by the RAPD data, likely represents isolation between Taiwan and Ryukyu since the mid-Pleistocene.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Plant Science