Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), Inter simple sequence repeat (ISSR) and Amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers were used to verify the segregation of the genus Cassia L. (sens. lat.) into three distinct genera namely, Chamaecrista Moench.,Senna P. Mill. and Cassia L. (sens.str.). Eighteen representatives of the three taxa were characterized using the molecular markers. 25 RAPD, six ISSR primers and six AFLP primer combinations resulted in the amplification of 612, 115 and 622 bands (loci), respectively. Most of the loci are found to be polymorphic, showing high degrees of genetic diversity among the different taxa studied. The dendrogram constructed on the basis of the RAPD, ISSR and AFLP data using the SHAN clustering, divided Cassia L. (sens. lat.) into three different clusters as Chamaecrista Moench., Senna P. Mill. and Cassia L. (sens.str.). High bootstrap value revealed that all the clusters were stable and robust. It was observed from the present investigation that these genera have their identity at molecular level, which supports the elevation of the genus Cassia L. sens. lat. to the level of sub tribe Cassiinae and segregationinto three distinct genera instead of intra-generic categories. In the present study taking the molecular markers into account the trifurcation of the sub tribe Cassiinae could be re-established.
Key words: Cassia, molecular phylogeny, RAPD, ISSR, AFLP.
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