Domestication of small-seeded lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus L.) landraces in Mesoamerica: evidence from microsatellite markers
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Previous studies have suggested that the Mesoamerican small-seeded landraces of Lima bean may have been domesticated more than once in Mesoamerica, once in central-western Mexico and another one in an area between Guatemala and Costa Rica. However, these findings were based on sequencing of only one locus from nuclear DNA, and additional confirmation was needed. Here we contribute with additional data on the origin of the Mesoamerican landraces and document the founder effect due to domestication. We characterized 62 domesticated, 87 wild and six weedy Lima bean accessions with ten microsatellite loci. Genetic relationships were analyzed using genetic distances and Bayesian clustering approaches. Domestication bottlenecks were documented using inter-population comparisons and M ratios. The results support at least one domestication event in the area of distribution of gene pool MI in central-western Mexico and also show that some landraces are genetically related to wild accessions of gene pool MII. Also, our data support founder effects due to domestication in Mesoamerican Lima bean landraces. Although we could not establish more specifically the place of origin of the Mesoamerican Lima bean landraces, our results show that these are not a genetically homogeneous group, a finding that may be compatible with a scenario of more than one domestication event accompanied by gene flow. The complex genetic makeup of landraces that we found indicates that a more comprehensive geographic and genomic sampling is needed in order to establish how domestication processes and gene flow have shaped the current genetic structure of landraces.
KeywordsCrop domestication Bayesian clustering Genetic distance Founder effect SSR markers Wild ancestors
The first author thanks Ciencia Básica-CONACYT (Project No. 82642) and the National Geographic Society (Grant No. 8622-09) for the economic support to carry out this research. The authors thank the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, Drs. Rogelio Lépiz and Jorge Acosta for providing seed samples. The first author thanks Julian Coello Coello and Filogonio May Pat for technical support in the field and laboratory work.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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