An Evaluation of Genetic Diversity among some Iranian Edible Asparagus (Asparagus officinalis L.) Genotypes using RAPD Markers



RAPD markers were employed to assess the genetic diversity of 34 Iranian wild edible asparagus (A. officinalis) genotypes as well as cv. Mary Washington and A. persicus. In total, 80 RAPD primers were employed for PCR reactions, among which, 18 revealed reasonable polymorphism. The 18 primers produced 175 bands, of which, 160 were polymorphic (91.4% polymorphism). Cluster analysis of the genotypes was performed based on their presence (1) or absence (0) of the bands, employing Jaccard's Similarity Coefficient and the method of UPGMA. The highest and lowest observed genetic coefficients of similarity between genotypes were recorded as 0.71 and 0.29, respectively. At a distance of similarity of 0.68 on the dendrogram, the genotypes were divided into seven sub-clusters. Wild genotypes were positioned in four subclusters followed by two subclusters that included the cultivated asparagus and the edible A. officinalis cv. Mary Washington. The species A. persicus, as a distinguished ones, located in a last subcluster with an acceptable distance from other genotypes. The examined genotypes were of relatively high diversity, indicating the richness of asparagus genetic resources in Iran. Furthermore, this study reflected the capability of RAPD markers in differentiating Asparagus species and to study their genetic diversity.