Research Article

Genetic diversity of Broussonetia papyrifera populations in southwest China

Published: September 12, 2014
Genet. Mol. Res. 13 (3) : 7553-7563 DOI: https://doi.org/10.4238/2014.September.12.22
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Abstract

Broussonetia papyrifera is an important native tree species with high economic value in southwest China. Its resources are drastically reduced because of over-harvesting and habitat fragmentation. In this study, 17 natural populations of B. papyrifera were analyzed using inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers to assess the genetic diversity and population structure. In total, 100 bands were obtained from 16 ISSR primers. The B. papyrifera populations showed relatively high genetic diversity at the species level [percentage of polymorphic bands (PPB): 96%; Nei’s genetic diversity (HE): 0.3074; Shannon’s information index (I): 0.4617], while the genetic diversity at the population level was relatively low (PPB: 53.2%; HE: 0.1826; I: 0.2735). Relatively high level of genetic differentiation among populations (41%) was disclosed by analysis of molecular variance, which agrees with the Nei’s genetic diversity statistics (40.59%) and Shannon’s information measure (40.76%). Gene flow among populations (NM) was only 0.7318. A significant correlation was observed between genetic and geographic distance among the studied populations (r = 0.2948). We conjectured that the genetic diversity of B. papyrifera resulted from human disturbance, habitat fragmentation, small effective population size, and geographic barrier. Given the high genetic differentiation among populations, some utilization and conservation strategies were proposed. This study provides a reference for the sustainable use of the species in southwest China.

Broussonetia papyrifera is an important native tree species with high economic value in southwest China. Its resources are drastically reduced because of over-harvesting and habitat fragmentation. In this study, 17 natural populations of B. papyrifera were analyzed using inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers to assess the genetic diversity and population structure. In total, 100 bands were obtained from 16 ISSR primers. The B. papyrifera populations showed relatively high genetic diversity at the species level [percentage of polymorphic bands (PPB): 96%; Nei’s genetic diversity (HE): 0.3074; Shannon’s information index (I): 0.4617], while the genetic diversity at the population level was relatively low (PPB: 53.2%; HE: 0.1826; I: 0.2735). Relatively high level of genetic differentiation among populations (41%) was disclosed by analysis of molecular variance, which agrees with the Nei’s genetic diversity statistics (40.59%) and Shannon’s information measure (40.76%). Gene flow among populations (NM) was only 0.7318. A significant correlation was observed between genetic and geographic distance among the studied populations (r = 0.2948). We conjectured that the genetic diversity of B. papyrifera resulted from human disturbance, habitat fragmentation, small effective population size, and geographic barrier. Given the high genetic differentiation among populations, some utilization and conservation strategies were proposed. This study provides a reference for the sustainable use of the species in southwest China.