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Mol Ecol. 2001 Nov;10(11):2729-40.

Contrasting evolutionary forces driving population structure at expressed sequence tag polymorphisms, allozymes and quantitative traits in white spruce.

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Centre de Recherche en Biologie Forestière, Université Laval, Sainte-Foy, Quebec, Canada.


Patterns of variation in quantitative characters and genetic markers were compared among six regional populations of white spruce [Picea glauca (Moench) Voss]. Although some phenotypic characters were correlated with latitude (r = 0.791), longitude (r = -0.796) and precipitation during the growing season (r = 0.789), variability at genetic markers was not correlated with geographical or bioclimatic variables, and followed neutral expectations. Estimates of genetic diversity and population differentiation for 14 allozymes (translated regions of coding genes) were essentially indistinguishable from those observed for 11 expressed sequence tag polymorphisms (ESTPs) from untranslated regions of coding genes. Variation among populations for quantitative traits such as eighth year height (Q(ST) = 0.082), thirteenth year height (Q(ST) = 0.069), total wood density (Q(ST) = 0.102) and date of budset (Q(ST) = 0.246), was greater than for allozymes (G(ST) = 0.014) and ESTPs (G(ST) = 0.019). These trends suggest a strong adaptive response in quantitative traits, contrasting to allozymes and ESTPs where no selective response could be detected and where populations appeared to be essentially in a migration-drift equilibrium.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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