Research Article

Paternity identification in Spondias tuberosa (Anacardiaceae: Sapindales) polycrosses using microsatellite loci

Published: April 30, 2021
Genet. Mol. Res. 20(2): GMR18816 DOI:


The umbu tree (Spondias tuberosa) is endemic to the Brazilian semiarid region. This species is not cultivated and commercialized fruits are a result of extrativism; consequently little has been done to develop new and more productive cultivars. Hybrids of different accessions are a result of natural open pollination, so identifying putative male parents among progenies of umbu tree accessions is difficult. Eight accessions were pre-selected for larger fruit size and clones were established at Petrolina, PE. Female plants were randomly chosen among accessions of an established umbu tree experimental plot. Alleles of putative male parents were evaluated based on simple sequence repeat (SSR) loci. Of the 32 SSR loci evaluated, 10 showed polymorphism. Thirty-four alleles were identified, with an average of 3.4/locus. Polymorphism information content ranged from 0.195 to 0.744; the expected ranged from 0.233 to 0.825 and the observed heterozygosity ranged from 0.250 to 0.825. Accessions similarity ranged from 0.44 to 0.68, distributed into two groups: (I) common umbu, BGU30, BGU37, BGU44, BGU55 and BGU68, and (II) BGU 48 and BGU52. Hybrids and self-fertilized plants were identified among BGU30 and BGU37 progenies;   17 out of 20 and 14 out of 44 hybrids were identified by SSR loci in the BGU30 and BGU37 progenies, respectively. The putative hybrids BGU30 × BGU48, BGU30 × BGU55, BGU30 × BGU44, BGU30 × BGU68, BGU37 × BGU44, BGU37 × BGU55 and BGU37 × BGU52 have potential for future evaluations, as they were more divergent in the dendrogram or had male parents with higher weight fruits. The 10 SSR loci were sufficient to identify a single parent in 12 of 20 BGU30 hybrids and all 14 BGU37 hybrids, demonstrating the potential of this procedure.