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Analysis of genetic diversity and structure in a worldwide walnut (Juglans regia L.) germplasm using SSR markers.

Abstract : Persian or English walnut (Juglans regia L.), the walnut species cultivated for nut production, is one of the oldest food sources known and is grown worldwide in temperate areas. France is the 7th leading producer as of 2016 with 39 kt. Deciphering walnut genetic diversity and structure is important for efficient management and use of genetic resources. In this work, 253 worldwide accessions from the INRA walnut germplasm collection, containing English walnut and several related species, were genotyped using 13 SSR (Single Sequence Repeat) markers selected from the literature to assess diversity and structure. Genetic diversity parameters showed a deficiency of heterozygotes and, for several SSRs, allele-specificities among the accessions tested. Principal Coordinate Analysis (PCoA) showed the 253 accessions clustered in largely in agreement with the existing botanical classification of the genus. Among the 217 J. regia accessions, two main clusters, accessions from Eastern Europe and Asia, and accessions from Western Europe and America, were identified using STRUCTURE software. This was confirmed by Principal Coordinate Analysis and supported by Neighbor-Joining tree construction using DARwin software. Moreover, a substructure was found within the two clusters, mainly according to geographical origin. A core collection containing 50 accessions was selected using the maximum length sub-tree method and prior knowledge about their phenotype. The present study constitutes a preliminary population genetics overview of INRA walnut genetic resources collection using SSR markers. The resulting estimations of genetic diversity and structure are useful for germplasm management and for future walnut breeding programs.
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Anthony Bernard, Teresa Barreneche, Fabrice Lheureux, Elisabeth Dirlewanger. Analysis of genetic diversity and structure in a worldwide walnut (Juglans regia L.) germplasm using SSR markers.. PLoS ONE, Public Library of Science, 2018, 13 (11), pp.e0208021. ⟨10.1371/journal.pone.0208021⟩. ⟨hal-02627085⟩

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