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Plant Sci. 2001 May;160(6):1115-1123.

Microsatellite markers from sugarcane (Saccharum spp.) ESTs cross transferable to erianthus and sorghum.

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  • 1Centre for Plant Conservation Genetics, Southern Cross University, P.O. Box 157, NSW 2480, Lismore, Australia


Analysis of a sugarcane (Saccharum spp.) EST (expressed sequence tag) library of 8678 sequences revealed approximately 250 microsatellite or simple sequence repeats (SSRs) sequences. A diversity of dinucleotide and trinucleotide SSR repeat motifs were present although most were of the (CGG)(n) trinucleotide motif. Primer sets were designed for 35 sequences and tested on five sugarcane genotypes. Twenty-one primer pairs produced a PCR product and 17 pairs were polymorphic. Primer pairs that produced polymorphisms were mainly located in the coding sequence with only a single pair located within the 5' untranslated region. No primer pairs producing a polymorphic product were found in the 3' untranslated region. The level of polymorphism (PIC value) in cultivars detected by these SSRs was low in sugarcane (0.23). However, a subset of these markers showed a significantly higher level of polymorphism when applied to progenitor and related genera (Erianthus sp. and Sorghum sp.). By contrast, SSRs isolated from sugarcane genomic libraries amplify more readily, show high levels of polymorphism within sugarcane with a higher PIC value (0.72) but do not transfer to related species or genera well.

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