Molecular Diversity Analysis of Cultivated Carrot (Daucus carota L.) and Wild Daucus Populations Reveals a Genetically Nonstructured Composition

in Journal of the American Society for Horticultural Science
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  • 1 U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Vegetable Crops Research Unit, Department of Horticulture, 1575 Linden Drive, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706
  • 2 Department of Agricultural Sciences, Plant Breeding and Crop Science, The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, 40 Thorvaldsensvej, DK-1871 Frederiksberg C, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • 3 Institut National d'Horticulture, 2 Rue Le Nôtre, 49045 Angers Cedex 01, France
  • 4 Department of Genetics, Plant Breeding and Seed Science, Agricultural University of Kraków, Al. 29 Listopada 54, 31-425, Kraków, Poland
  • 5 U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, Vegetable Crops Unit, Department of Horticulture, 1575 Linden Drive, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706

A sample of 124 Daucus carota L. accessions, including cultivated carrot [D. carota ssp. sativus (Hoffm.) Arcangeli] and related wild subspecies, using a variety of molecular markers was examined. Represented within the samples were wild accessions from 18 countries, 14 of 16 major root types of European origin, and examples of major North American and Asian cultivated carrot types. Amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) and inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers revealed extensive variation within D. carota. Although cultivated carrot and wild D. carota subspecies can cross freely, cultivated and wild carrots clustered separately, supporting the possibility that human selection for desirable horticultural traits has artificially reduced gene flow between cultivated and wild forms. Our analyses support the likelihood that North American D. carota populations arose due to introduction of weedy materials rather than escape of cultivated forms. With the exception of wild vs. cultivated types, no genetic alliances were evident in dendrogram topology. Furthermore, between and even within nonmapped marker classes, dendrogram topology predictions were not consistent. Generally poor correlations among root types, geographic origin, mitochondrial, plastid, and specific nuclear diversity and AFLP/ISSR data were also observed. We concluded that genetic diversity in carrot is extensive and relatively nonstructured in nature.

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