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Theor Appl Genet. 2004 May;108(8):1466-72. Epub 2004 Jan 23.

Genetic diversity in cultivated plants-loss or stability?

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Institut für Pflanzengenetik und Kulturpflanzenforschung (IPK), Corrensstrasse 3, 06466 Gatersleben, Germany.


Human activities like urbanisation, the replacement of traditional agriculture systems by modern industrial methods or the introduction of modern high-yielding varieties may pose a danger to the biological diversity. Using microsatellite markers, we analysed samples of cultivated wheat ( Triticum aestivum L.) collected over an interval of 40-50 years in four comparable geographical regions of Europe and Asia. No significant differences in both the total number of alleles per locus and in the PIC values were detected when the material collected in the repeated collection missions in all four regions were compared. About two-thirds of the alleles were common to both collection periods, while one-third represented collection mission-specific alleles. These findings demonstrate that an allele flow took place during the adaptation of traditional agriculture to modern systems, whereas the level of genetic diversity was not significantly influenced.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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