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Retrotransposon-based markers revealed a repartition depending on geographical origin and breeding status of Tunisian pistachio species

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Retrotransposon movements are considered to be an important factor in evolutionary processes and speciation as well as a source of genetic variation. In order to analyze genetic diversity and population structure in Tunisian pistachio species, nine inter-retrotransposon amplified polymorphism (IRAP) markers were used. As a result, eighty-six amplicons were produced among which 98.15 % were polymorphic. Mean numbers of the effective number of alleles (Ne), Shannon’s information index (I) and Nei’s genetic diversity (H) were respectively 1.529, 0.478, and 0.310. The average within-population genetic diversity (Hs) was 0.24 and the total diversity (Ht) was 0.3. The Tunisian pistachio populations exhibited high genetic differentiation (Gst =0.275) and gene flow (Nm = 1.888). The Analysis of Molecular Variance (AMOVA) indicated that variation was very high within populations (83 %). Phylogenetic tree using neighbor- joining (NJ) method and Principal Coordinates Analysis (PCoA) depicted that groupings of Tunisian varieties were made independently of the sex of the trees, but depending on their geographical origin and their breeding status. The modelbased Bayesian clustering (STRUCTURE) confirmed these observations. The inter-retrotransposons amplification polymorphism markers were significantly informative at the interspecific level. Findings reported in our study will be essential toward breeding for new pistachio genotypes with developed chemical and horticultural features.

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Life Sciences, Molecular Biology, Genetics, Biotechnology, Plant Science