Canadian Forest Service Publications

A second-generation diagnostic single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-based assay, optimized to distinguish among eight poplar (Populus L.) species and their early hybrids. 2013. Isabel, N.; Lamothe, M.; Thompson, S.L. Tree Genet. Genomes 9:621-626.

Year: 2013

Issued by: Laurentian Forestry Centre

Catalog ID: 34791

Language: English

Availability: PDF (request by e-mail)

Available from the Journal's Web site.
DOI: 10.1007/s11295-012-0569-5

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Rapid identification of Populus L. species and hybrids can be achieved with relatively little effort through the use of primer extension-based single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) genotyping assays. We present an optimized set of 36 SNP markers from 28 gene regions that diagnose eight poplar species (Populus angustifolia James, Populus balsamifera L., Populus deltoides Bartram, Populus fremontii Watson, Populus laurifolia Ledeb., Populus maximowiczii Henry, Populus nigra L., and Populus trichocarpa Torr. & Gray). A total of 700 DNA sequences from six Populus species (1–15 individuals per species) were used to construct the array. A set of flanking and probe oligonucleotides was developed and tested. The accuracy of the SNP assay was validated by genotyping 448 putatively “pure” individuals from 14 species of Populus. Overall, the SNP assay had a high success rate (97.6 %) and will prove useful for the identification of all Aigeiros Duby and Tacamahaca Spach. species and their early-generation hybrids within natural populations and breeding programs. Null alleles and intraspecific polymorphisms were detected for a few locus/species combinations in the Aigeiros and Tacamahaca sections. When we attempted to genotype aspens of the section Populus (Populus alba L., Populus grandidentata Michx., Populus tremula L., and Populus tremuloides Michx.), the success rate of the SNP array decreased by 13 %, demonstrating moderate cross-sectional transferability.

Plain Language Summary

Different species of poplar are easily able to crossbreed between themselves. This gene flow between species makes identification virtually impossible when the trees are in the same area. To counter this problem, the researchers developed genetic markers used to identify poplar species based on the principle that each species has a specific genetic fingerprint. These markers make it possible to determine the nature of the eight most common poplar species in Canada and their hybrids.