The plant family Orchidaceae has a great economic value (ornamental and medical uses, beside the aromatic features). Traditionally, identification of orchid species has relied heavily on morphological features. These features, however, are either not variable enough between species or too plastic to be used for identification at the species level. DNA-based markers could be the alternative strategy towards an accurate and robust identification of those species. Since the chloroplast DNA has a lower level of evolution compared to the nuclear genome, an attempt was made in this study to investigate polymorphism in the chloroplast DNA among orchid species distributed in North-West region of Syria using Cleaved Amplified Polymorphic Sequence (CAPS) technique for developing markers for the diagnosis of targeted species. CAPS analysis was carried out on 34 orchid samples that represent all species observed in the region. Universal primers were used to amplify targeted chloroplast regions. Generated PCR products were digested with various restriction enzymes. CAPS results revealed high polymorphism among species examined. This polymorphism was suffiecient for the diagnosis of all of those species apart from five species (Ophrys fuciflora (one sample), Oph. bornmuelleri, Ophrys sp., scolopax and Oph. argolica). Availability of such species-specific markers would ensure more authentic identification of orchid species compared to morphological characters and can be regarded as a valuable tool to guide in conservation programs of orchid species in Syria. CAPS data generated were converted to an identification key for orchid species studied.
Russian Journal of Genetics – Springer Journals
Published: Aug 17, 2010
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