Molecular diversity and population structure of the Ethiopian lentil (Lens culinaris Medikus) genotype assessment using SSR markers
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Knowledge of genetic diversity in germplasm is essential for formulating effective germplasm collection, conservation, utilization strategies in and crop improvement programs. It also provides an opportunity to take corrective steps infusing new genes to avoid risks associated with a narrow genetic bases. Genetic diversity analysis of 119 lentil genotypes of including 83 germplasm and 36 exotic genotypes from International Center for Agricultural Research in the Dry Areas was studied using 27 primers of simple sequence repeat (SSR) marker. Molecular analysis of variance showed variations of 82% within and 18% of the among population variance was explained. Degree of polymorphism observed among the populations was 100%. A total 122 alleles were detected, with 2 to 7 alleles per locus, with a mean of 4.52 alleles per locus. The estimated gene diversity value for 27 loci was 0.64. The average Shannon’s information index value of 1.19 was obtained showed the existence of high genetic variation within the genotypes. The genetic similarity indices ranged from 0.21 to 1.00. The SSR markers showed an average polymorphic information content (PIC) value of 0.58. Cluster analysis grouped the genotypes into five major clusters as distinct genetic populations. Diversity analyses revealed the existence of a high level of genetic variation among genotypes. This molecular diversity information provides a basis for future germplasm collection, utilization, and conservation strategies in gene banks and introducing exotic germplasm to widen the genetic base of the current lentil breeding population.