Evaluation of Genetic Diversity of Twenty-eight Sweet Cherry Genotypes by Morphological Traits and SCoT Markers in the Northwest of Iran

Document Type : Research Article


1 Department of Horticultural Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Ardabil, Iran.

2 Department of Horticultural sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Mohaghegh Ardabili, Ardabil, Iran.

3 Horticultural Sciences Research Institute, Karaj, Iran


Sweet cherry (Prunus avium L.) is mainly grown in temperate climate countries. Because of the economic importance of sweet cherry and its high genetic diversity in Arasbaran (a region in northwestern Iran), the selection of superior genotypes as resistant rootstocks has great importance for breeding programs. In this study, the genetic diversity of 28 genotypes of sweet cherry was by 11 qualitative and nine quantitative traits and SCoT markers, in the Ahar Afil area (a region of Arasbaran). In the first experiment, quantitative and qualitative characteristics of the fruits, leaves, trees as well as flowers were evaluated. Results of simple correlation coefficients showed a positive and significant correlation among some of the measured morphological traits. Cluster analyses of the morphological traits classified the genotypes into two main groups. In the second experiment, SCoT markers, by application of 12 primers, were used for genetic diversity analysis of the sweet cherry genotypes. The results, 89.9% of polymorphism was detected by 12 primers and the number of polymorphic bands per primer was between 2 to 9 bands, with an average of 5.3. The number of observed (Na) and effective (Ne) alleles, Marker index (MI), resolving power (RP), and an index for primer was an average of 11, 8.27, 3.78, and 5.07, respectively. A high variation was observed in the grouping of genotypes through cluster analysis. Cluster analysis based on Dice similarity coefficient matrix and structure analysis classified the populations into eight main groups. Our results showed a high level of genetic diversity in 28 sweet cherry genotypes. This study will be helpful for the conservation and management of sweet cherry genetic resources for further breeding programs.


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