Introgression of wild relative Asparagus spp. germplasm into the Spanish landrace 'Morado de Huétor'

L. Amian, J. Rubio, P. Castro, J. Gil, R. Moreno
It is well known that garden asparagus cultivars (Asparagus officinalis L.) have a relatively narrow genetic base due to their common origin from the open-pollinated cultivar “Violet Dutch” (18th century). In this study, closely related wild asparagus species have been employed to enlarge the genetic background of this cultivated species. To achieve this goal, due to the differences in ploidy among the wild species and the cultivated ones, the Spanish landrace ‘Morado de Huétor’ was used as an intermediate step. Germplasm of five wild asparagus species (A. maritimus, A. pseudoscaber, A. brachyphylus, A. prostratus and A. macrorrhizus) was introgressed into the Spanish landrace ‘Morado de Huétor’ (MH). A 66-plant MH-BC1 collection with 4x, 6x and 8x ploidy was obtained by using MH as the recurrent parent in crosses with these five wild asparagus species. The genetic variability of this collection was studied using four expressed sequence tag derived simple sequence repeat (EST-SSR) markers. The results were compared with both MH and six diploid Asparagus officinalis cultivars, which had been previously analyzed with the same set of markers. The genetic variability was higher in the 66 plants developed in this study than in the diploid cultivars. A low frequency (around 15%) of alleles unique to the wild species was present in our collection. A scatter plot from principal coordinate analysis showed different distributions of the plants corresponding with their ploidy level and introgression parentage. Our results show that this MH-BC1 collection has introgressions from relative wild species and could be used in the development of new cultivars to broaden the genetic base of garden asparagus.
Amian, L., Rubio, J., Castro, P., Gil, J. and Moreno, R. (2018). Introgression of wild relative Asparagus spp. germplasm into the Spanish landrace 'Morado de Huétor'. Acta Hortic. 1223, 33-38
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2018.1223.5
asparagus, EST-SSR, molecular marker, polyploidy

Acta Horticulturae