Assessment of genetic relationships among 29 introduced and 49 local sweet cherry accessions in Turkey using AFLP and SSR markers

Gulen H., İPEK A., Ergin S., Akcay M. E., Eris A.

JOURNAL OF HORTICULTURAL SCIENCE & BIOTECHNOLOGY, vol.85, no.5, pp.427-431, 2010 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier


The characterisation of sweet cherry (Prunus avium L.) genetic resources in Turkey may help to increase their use in breeding programmes worldwide, as Turkey is the centre of origin of sweet cherry. Amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) and simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers were therefore used to analyse genetic diversity among a total of 78 local and introduced sweet cherry cultivars. Four AFLP primer combinations, and six SSR primer pairs for sweet cherry were used for genetic diversity analysis. A genetic similarity matrix was calculated using the combined data from AFLP and SSR analyses with simple matching coefficient. Genetic similarities among the sweet cherry genotypes studied were higher than 42%. No two accessions had an identical AFLP and SSR marker profile, indicating that all 78 genotypes were unique. An UPGMA dendrogram, based on the similarity matrix, revealed 18 separate Groups at or above the 70% similarity level. While some Groups consisted of both introduced and local genotypes, other Groups had only local genotypes. This result suggests that there was broad genetic diversity among the local Turkish sweet cherry genotypes, which was not present in the introduced sweet cherry accessions. The genetic variation present in local Turkish sweet cherry genotypes may be useful for future breeding programmes. We found that the use of both SSR and AFLP marker systems was effective for distinguishing between genetically-close sweet cherry genotypes. These marker systems can be used to complement pomological and morphological markers during the characterisation and identification of sweet cherry genotypes.