Quantitative and qualitative differences in morphological traits revealed between diploid Fragaria species
Sargent, D.J., Geibel, M. , Hawkins, J.A. , Wilkinson, M.J. , Battey, N.H. and Simpson, D.W. (2004) Quantitative and qualitative differences in morphological traits revealed between diploid Fragaria species. Annals of Botany, 94 (6). pp. 787-796. ISSN 0305-7364
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To link to this article DOI: 10.1093/aob/mch217
Background and Aims: The aims of this investigation were to highlight the qualitative and quantitative diversity apparent between nine diploid Fragaria species and produce interspecific populations segregating for a large number of morphological characters suitable for quantitative trait loci analysis. Methods: A qualitative comparison of eight described diploid Fragaria species was performed and measurements were taken of 23 morphological traits from 19 accessions including eight described species and one previously undescribed species. A principal components analysis was performed on 14 mathematically unrelated traits from these accessions, which partitioned the species accessions into distinct morphological groups. Interspecific crosses were performed with accessions of species that displayed significant quantitative divergence and, from these, populations that should segregate for a range of quantitative traits were raised. Key Results: Significant differences between species were observed for all 23 morphological traits quantified and three distinct groups of species accessions were observed after the principal components analysis. Interspecific crosses were performed between these groups, and F2 and backcross populations were raised that should segregate for a range of morphological characters. In addition, the study highlighted a number of distinctive morphological characters in many of the species studied. Conclusions: Diploid Fragaria species are morphologically diverse, yet remain highly interfertile, making the group an ideal model for the study of the genetic basis of phenotypic differences between species through map-based investigation using quantitative trait loci. The segregating interspecific populations raised will be ideal for such investigations and could also provide insights into the nature and extent of genome evolution within this group.