Five edible mountain vegetables (Saussurea sp., Aster tataricus, A. scaber, Synurus deltoides, Ligularia fischeri) were investigated on the basis of amplified DNA polymorphisms resulted from PCR–polymerase chain reaction analysis. The sampled plants consisted of 38 individuals in five taxa. Only 10 primers out of 62 [60 random (10-mer) primers, one 15-mer-M13 core sequence, and (GGAT)4 sequence] tested gave rise to polymorphisms in all of the tested plants, producing 176 DNA fragments amplified randomly and specifically. Intraspecific polymorphisms found in each taxa showed intra-variety constancy (31.1% to 40.9%) in the banding patterns of individual plants—Saussurea sp., 31.1%, 15 bands; Aster tataricus, 40.9%, 18 bands; A. scaber, 38.5%, 15 bands; Synurus deltoides, 34.7%, 17 bands; Ligularia fischeri, 38.9%; 22 bands, respectively. All five species were well-differentiated from each other at the 0.93 level of similarity index value. Genetic relationships among intraspecific and interspecific variations were closely related at the levels ranging from 0.62 to 0.99. Based on these results, our PCR analyses support the previous data derived from external morphology of the five edible mountain vegetables, but very low levels of intraspecific variations were detected in all of these taxa.
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