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Identification of the Worldwide Olive Germplasm Bank of Córdoba (Spain) using SSR and morphological markers

Trujillo, Isabel, Ojeda, Maria A., Urdiroz, Nieves M., Potter, Daniel, Barranco, Diego, Rallo, Luis, Diez, Concepcion M.
Tree genetics & genomes 2014 v.10 no.1 pp. 141-155
crops, cultivars, genotype, germplasm, microsatellite repeats, olives, Spain
Olive is one of the most ancient crop plants and the World Olive Germplasm Bank of Cordoba (WOGBC), Spain, is one of the world’s largest collections of olive germplasm. We used 33 SSR (Simple Sequence Repeats) markers and 11 morphological characteristics of the endocarp to characterise, identify and authenticate 824 trees, representing 499 accessions from 21 countries of origin, from the WOGBC collection. The SSR markers exhibited high variability and information content. Of 332 cultivars identified in this study based on unique combinations of SSR genotypes and endocarp morphologies, 200 were authenticated by genotypic and morphological markers matches with authentic control samples. We found 130 SSR genotypes that we considered as molecular variants because they showed minimal molecular differences but the same morphological profile than 48 catalogued cultivars. We reported 15 previously described and 37 new cases of synonyms as well as 26 previously described and seven new cases of homonyms. We detected several errors in accession labelling, which may have occurred at any step during establishment of plants in the collection. Nested sets of 5, 10 and 17 SSRs were proposed to progressively and efficiently identify all of the genotypes studied here. The study provides a useful protocol for the characterisation, identification and authentication of any olive germplasm bank that has facilitated the establishment of a repository of true-to-type cultivars at the WOGBC.