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  • Author or Editor: Laura M. DiMeglio x
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The cultivated strawberry, Fragaria ×ananassa Duchesne ex Rozier, originated via hybridization between octoploids F. chiloensis (L.) Mill. and F. virginiana Mill. These three octoploid species are thought to share a putative genome composition of AAA`A'BBB`B'. Diploid F. vesca L., is considered to have donated the A genome. Current attention to the development of a diploid model system for strawberry genomics warrants the assessment of simple sequence repeat (SSR) marker transferability between the octoploid and diploid species in Fragaria L. In the present study, 23 SSR primer pairs derived from F. ×ananassa `Earliglow' by genomic library screening were evaluated for their utility in six diploid Fragaria species, including eight representatives of F. vesca, four of F. viridis Weston, and one each of F. nubicola (Hook. f.) Lindl. ex Lacaita, F. mandshurica Staudt, F. iinumae Makino, and F. nilgerrensis Schltdl. ex J. Gay. SSR primer pair functionality, as measured by amplification success rate (= 100% - failure rate) in each species, was ranked (from highest to lowest) as follows: F. vesca (98.4%) > F. iinumae (93.8%) = F. nubicola (93.8%) > F. mandshurica (87.5%) > F. nilgerrensis (75%) > F. viridis (73.4%). The extent to which these octoploid-derived SSR primer pairs generated markers that could be added to the F. vesca linkage map also was assessed. Of the 13 F. ×ananassa SSR markers that segregated codominantly in the F. vesca mapping population, 11 were assigned to linkage groups based upon close linkages to previously mapped loci. These markers were distributed over six of the seven F. vesca linkage groups, and can serve as anchor loci defining these six groups for purposes of comparative mapping between F. vesca and F. ×ananassa.

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The past year has brought substantial progress in the development of functional and structural genomic tools for strawberry. Sequencing of cDNA library clones from the cultivated strawberry Fragaria × ananassa and the diploid model species Fragaria vesca has provided more than 3000 new EST sequences. We have also constructed a large (∼40 kb) insert genomic (fosmid) library from F. vesca. About 33,000 fosmid clones have been picked and spotted onto hybridization filters. Filters have been successfully probed with three single copy gene probes, one gene family probe, and chloroplast DNA (cpDNA) and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) probe sets. The combined cpDNA and mtDNA clone content of the library is about 11%. After correction for organelle insert content, the nuclear genome coverage of the library is about 6×. Complete sequencing of two fosmid clones identified 12 putative protein-encoding genes, four of which were organized in colinearity with the corresponding chromosomal region of Arabidopsis thaliana. We will sequence an additional 50 fosmid clones, and use the resulting sequence data as the basis for developing a novel marker technology, to be described. These genomic tools will provide a basis for connecting specific genes to specific traits in the octoploid, cultivated strawberry, paving the way for implementation of gene-based, marker assisted selection as a tool for strawberry breeders. Opportunity for cross-species comparisons of gene sequence and composition, as well as genome organization and linkage group structure, between Fragaria and other members of the economically important Rosaceae family has been significantly enhanced, thus expanding the relevance of the project results to peach, cherry, apple, rose, brambles, and many other Rosaceous species.

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