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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Apr 30;99(9):6080-4.

A single domestication for maize shown by multilocus microsatellite genotyping.

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  • 1Laboratory of Genetics, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706, USA.

Abstract

There exists extraordinary morphological and genetic diversity among the maize landraces that have been developed by pre-Columbian cultivators. To explain this high level of diversity in maize, several authors have proposed that maize landraces were the products of multiple independent domestications from their wild relative (teosinte). We present phylogenetic analyses based on 264 individual plants, each genotyped at 99 microsatellites, that challenge the multiple-origins hypothesis. Instead, our results indicate that all maize arose from a single domestication in southern Mexico about 9,000 years ago. Our analyses also indicate that the oldest surviving maize types are those of the Mexican highlands with maize spreading from this region over the Americas along two major paths. Our phylogenetic work is consistent with a model based on the archaeological record suggesting that maize diversified in the highlands of Mexico before spreading to the lowlands. We also found only modest evidence for postdomestication gene flow from teosinte into maize.

PMID:
11983901
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC122905
Free PMC Article

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