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Theor Appl Genet. 2003 Jan;106(2):346-52. Epub 2002 Jul 6.

Genetic variation of oaks ( Quercus spp.) in Switzerland. 3. Lack of impact of postglacial recolonization history on nuclear gene loci.

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Swiss Federal Research Institute WSL, Zürcherstrasse 111, CH-8903 Birmensdorf, Switzerland.


Quercus petraea, Quercus pubescens and Quercus robur are closely related and interfertile white oaks native to Switzerland. The three species are known to share identical cpDNA haplotypes, which are indicative of the postglacial recolonization history of populations. Only two haplotypes are common in Switzerland. We compared variation of cpDNA and of isozymes in 28 oak populations from Switzerland in order to assess the impact of the postglacial population history on current genetic structures of nuclear controlled isozyme gene loci. Species delineation was based on Principal Component Analysis of leaf morphological traits. The species status of populations was reflected at isozyme gene loci, but differentiation between populations with different cpDNA haplotypes and hence different recolonization history was very low at enzyme gene loci for all species. Thus, glacial and postglacial population history was not reflected at nuclear gene loci on the temporal and spatial scale covered by the present study. Extensive gene flow through pollen among populations is likely to have blurred a previously existing genetic differentiation at biparentally inherited gene loci that possibly evolved in the different glacial refugia of the above mentioned cpDNA haplotypes.

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