Genetic variation of the chloroplast genome in ten Abies species based on PCR-RFLP analysis

Laura Parducci and Alfred E. Szmidt

Theoretical and Applied Genetics (1999) 98: 802-808.

For reprint send email to: Alfred E. Szmidt


We used PCR-RFLP analysis of the chloroplast DNA of the genus Abies (family Pinaceae), to determine if the method could be used to detect inter-specific variation in this genus and to study how the variation was distributed in different regions of this genome. Ten different cpDNA regions, consisting of coding and non-coding DNA sequences, were amplified with specific primers in ten different Abies taxa. The amplification products were digested with several restriction enzymes. Results showed that the chloroplast genome is highly variable in most of the investigated taxa and contains multiple variable regions that appear to be distributed throughout the whole genome. Species-diagnostic markers were found for four of the ten investigated species. Unexpectedly intra-specific variation was also detected in four species. It is likely that further studies including larger sample sizes and/or more powerful methods for the detection of chloroplast DNA variation will reveal additional cpDNA variation for this genus.
Key words: Abies, chloroplast DNA, evolution, PCR-RFLP

by Alfred E. Szmidt