• Estimation of in situ mating systems in wild sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench) in Ethiopia using SSR-based progeny array data: implications for the spread of crop genes into the wild

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    • Keywords


      gene flow; inbreeding; outcrosssing; wild sorghum.

    • Abstract


      Because transgenic sorghum (Sorghum bicolor L.) is being developed for Africa, we investigated the potential for transgenes to spread to conspecific wild/weedy sorghum populations in Ethiopia, which is considered the centre of origin of cultivated sorghum. In the current study, the extent of outcrossing, and uniparental and biparental inbreeding were investigated in seven wild/weedy sorghum populations collected at elevations ranging from 631 to 1709 m. Based on allele frequency data of 1120 progenies and 140 maternal plants from five polymorphic microsatellite markers, outcrossing rates were estimated using standard procedures. The average multilocus outcrossing rate was 0.51, with a range of 0.31–0.65 among populations, and the family outcrossing rate was in the extreme range of 0 to 100%. The highest outcrossing ($t_{m} = 0.65$) was recorded in a weedy population that was intermixed with an improved crop variety in Abuare (Wello region). It was also observed that the inbreeding coefficient of the progenies ($F_{\text{p}}$) tend to be more than the inbreeding coefficient of both their maternal parents ($F_{\text{m}}$) and the level of inbreeding expected at equilibrium ($F_{\text{eq}}$), which is a characteristic of predominantly outbreeding species. Biparental inbreeding was evident in all populations and averaged 0.24 (range = 0.10–0.33). The high outcrossing rates of wild/weedy sorghum populations in Ethiopia indicate a high potential for crop genes (including transgenes) to spread within the wild pool. Therefore, effective risk management strategies may be needed if the introgression of transgenes or other crop genes from improved cultivars into wild or weedy populations is deemed to be undesirable.

    • Author Affiliations


      Asfaw Adugna1 2 Patty M. Sweeney3 Endashaw Bekele1

      1. Department of Biology, Addis Ababa University, P. O. Box 1976, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
      2. Melkassa Agricultural Research Center, P. O. Box 1085, Adama, Ethiopia
      3. Department of Evolution, Ecology and Organismal Biology, Ohio State University, 318 W 12th Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
    • Dates

  • Journal of Genetics | News

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