Genetic diversity of some Palestinian and Turkish olive (Olea europaea L.) germplasm determined with SSR markers

Mazen Abuzayed, Anne Frary, Sami Doganlar


Olive (Olea europaea L.) is one of the most important crops in the Mediterranean region including Palestine and Turkey. In this study, the genetic diversity and population structure of 19 olive cultivars (15 from Palestine and 4 from Turkey) was assessed using simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers. The 14 SSR markers yielded 110 alleles with 91% polymorphism and 7.8 alleles per marker. Genetic dissimilarity ranged from 0.00 to 0.51 with an average of 0.35. Cluster analysis using the Dice coefficient and the neighbor joining algorithm showed that the 19 cultivars grouped into three clusters, with all of the Turkish cultivars in one subcluster. Nabali Baldi from the West Bank and Souri from the Gaza Strip were identical and therefore, synonyms. The highest dissimilarity was between the Turkish Mut and Spanish Arbequina cultivars. In contrast to our expectation, two of the cultivars of supposed Palestinian origin clustered with an Italian cultivar suggesting that it may have originated there. Population structure analysis that assigned the 19 cultivars to two subpopulations.


Olea europaea L.; Genetic diversity; Population structure; Microsatellite; Molecular characterization.

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