Some debated issues of the genus Malus (apple) taxonomy were examined using a variety of species from the collection of the Maikop Experimental Station, Vavilon Research Institute of Plant Industry (Krasnodar krai). Phylogenetic relationships among these species were studied using traditional analysis of morphological traits, RAPD, and complete sequencing of the 5"- internal transcribed spacer (ITS1), 5.8S rRNA, 3"- internal transcribed spacer (ITS2) (constituting a cluster of the rRNA genes), and the terminal fragment of the matK gene encoding chloroplast maturase. The results showed that the Sorbomalussection was polyphyletic; the American apple M. fusca was closely related to the species contributing to the East Asian center of the genus origin, and the American speciesM. angustifolia, M. coronaria, and M. ioensis were closely related to the M. trilobata relict species, whose assignment to the genus Malus is debated by some authors. Molecular analysis of the species relationships showed that the Middle Asian apple M. sieversii is the species from which apple domestication started.
Russian Journal of Genetics – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 13, 2004
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