African Journal of
Plant Science

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Plant Sci.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0824
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJPS
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 807

Article in Press

Genetic diversity assessment of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) genotypes using SSR markers and morpho-agronomic traits

Bruce Mutari, Sripada Mahabala Udupa, Peter Mavindidze and Charles Shelton Mutengwa

  •  Received: 24 August 2016
  •  Accepted: 20 September 2016
A narrow genetic base may lead to genetic vulnerability against biotic and abiotic stresses. In order to assess the level of diversity among 28 bread wheat genotypes, characterization was done using 21 Simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers alongside 27 morpho-agronomic traits. Based on morpho-agronomic data, the genotypes were grouped into three clusters. The first three principal components explained 23.92, 14.92 and 10.02%, respectively, of the phenotypic variations. All the 12 quantitative traits were statistically not significant (p > 0.05) except for culm length, days to heading and days to flowering. Correlation coefficient analysis showed that grain yield had positive and significant associations with number of spikes per plant (r = 0.31, p ≤ 0.001) and 1000 grain weight (r = 0.36, p ≤ 0.001). From molecular characterization, 91 loci were found. Allele number per locus ranged from 2 to 10. Gene diversity varied from 0.19 to 0.86. Polymorphism information content values of the markers ranged from 0.17 to 0.85. Nei's (1973) genetic distance ranged from 0.00 to 0.86. Cluster analysis based on SSR allelic diversity differentiated the genotypes into 3 main clusters. Genetic diversity among the genotypes was low and moderate based on morpho-agronomic traits and SSR allelic data respectively.

Keywords: Bread wheat, genetic diversity, morphological characterization, simple sequence repeats, cluster analysis.