Isolation, characterization, and cross-species utility of microsatellites in yellow cedar (Chamaecyparis nootkatensis).

Research paper by Yanik Y Bérubé, Carol C Ritland, Kermit K Ritland

Indexed on: 02 Jul '03Published on: 02 Jul '03Published in: Genome / National Research Council Canada = Genome / Conseil national de recherches Canada


Chamaecyparis nootkatensis is an ecologically and economically important conifer of the north Pacific coastal forests. To aid in studies of clonal structure and genetic differentiation of this and related species, we isolated and characterized microsatellites from C. nootkatensis. A microsatellite-enriched library yielded 75 repeat-containing sequences for which primer pairs were designed. Only five showed reliable amplification and polymorphism, with an average of 13.7 alleles/locus and a mean expected heterozygosity of 0.592. In progeny tests with four families, few null alleles were directly detected and loci segregated according to Mendelian expectations. However, in one primer pair, high heterozygote deficiency was observed, suggesting the presence of a null allele. The ability of primer pairs to cross amplify was tested on 18 species of the Cupressaceae sensu lato; three primer pairs yielded polymorphic loci in Cupressus and Juniperus species, but not in other Chamaecyparis species. This also supports recent findings of a closer affinity of C. nootkatensis with Cupressus over other Chamaecyparis species.