Agro-morphological and structural diversity of rice germplasm revealed by SSR markers in Benin Republic.

Sedah Paulin, Lambert Gustave Djedatin, Laura Yêyinou Estelle Loko, Chalemagne Dossou Seblodo Judes Gbemavo, Azize Orobiyi, Joelle Toffa, Cyrille Tchakpa, Eben-Ezer Baba Kayodé Ewedje, et Francois Sabot. « Agro-Morphological and Structural Diversity of Rice Germplasm Revealed by SSR Markers in Benin Republic ». Molecular Biology Reports,

In developing countries, rice is a staple food and cash crop for the people. In Benin Republic, paddy rice production has increased over time. Accordingly, local varieties were replaced by improved varieties, leading unfortunatley to a loss of the diversity of Beninese rice germplasm. The investigation focused on the structure and genetic diversity of 72 rice accessions collected throughout 22 villages using 13 quantitative traits and 17 SSR markers. The descriptive analysis of the 13 quantitative parameters showed a significant difference among the accessions, with a grouping in three clusters. Group I (16.66% of samples) was composed of accessions with long, wide and thick grains alongside with four controls TOG5681, TOG5307, Azucena and Moroberekan. Group II (7% of samples) contained accessions with late vegetative cycle. Group III contained most of the accessions (76.39% of the samples), including accessions such as the CG14 and Nipponbare control lines, and almost all the improved varieties. The molecular analysis revealed a significant diversity (mean number of alleles: 4.47 with polymorphism information content of 0.633). Population structure based on molecular markers showed three primary populations with a mixture of phenotypic groupings at ΔK, K = 3. This study showed that Beninese rice germplasm was divided into two structures: phenotypically similar cultivars but genotypically distinct (homonyms), and phenotypically different cultivars but genotypically similar (synonyms). Some local cultivars such Bagou19, Bagou20 and Koud44 can be used for large scale production due to their agronomics and molecular traits. The molecular structure obtained in this investigation might be used for future conservation and breeding programs.

Keywords: Diversity, Rice, Microsatellites, Descriptors, Conservation, Benin.

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