The tung tree, also called Tung Oil Tree or China Wood-Oil Tree, is a small Asian tree of the spurge family (Euphorbiaceae). It is valuable for tung oil, which is derived from the oilseeds of the tree. To facilitate breeding and improvement of varieties, there is an urgent need for investigating genetic diversity at the population level and identifying genetic relationships among germplasms in tung trees. Microsatellite markers are a powerful tool for investigating genetic diversity and identifying genetic relationships among germplasms.
Dr. Liu Aizhong and his team of Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG)developed and characterized 20 microsatellite markers from V. montana and tested their polymorphisms in V. fordiiby cross-amplification,using the Fast Isolation by AFLP of Sequences Containing Repeats protocol. The 20 markers showed rich polymorphism when assessed in 120 samples of V. montana and six samples of V. fordii.
The results indicated that the 20 microsatellite markers harbored rich polymorphisms in the tung tree. The markers will be helpful for investigating the genetic diversity at the population level or identifying the genetic relationships among germplasms, facilitating breeding and variety improvement of the tung tree.
The study entitled “Microsatellite marker development in tung trees (Vernicia montana and V. fordii, Euphorbiaceae)” has been published in American Journal of Botany, 98(8): 226-228. doi: 10.3732/ajb.1100151.