The present study involved characterization of variability of qualitative morphological characters, protein patterns and random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers in some Pisum sativum genotypes. 17 different Pisum genotypes were used in this study. They are: Seven P. sativum L. cultivars (Vectory Freezer, Master, Lincoln, Little Marvel, Montana, Local and Billinder), three wild taxa of P. sativum L., five accessions ofP. sativum L. and two accessions of P. fulvum L. The results demonstrate a high potential and resolving power of DNA-based methods (RAPD markers) for discrimination between Pisum genotypes. The two accessions of P. fulvum L. were successfully separated on the basis of RAPD markers, while the morphological characters and protein patterns could not be distinguished between them. Wild taxa collected from the north coastal region of Egypt were separated from other genotypes, suggesting different genetic pool. RAPD markers indicated that four P. sativum L. cultivars (Vectory Freezer, Master, Lincoln and Little Marvel) and two accessions P. fulvum L. are grouped in one cluster, suggesting that these cultivars may be originated from the P. fulvum L. gene pool. Data indicated 46 RAPD markers specific to ten genotypes, and one marker specific to P. fulvum L. The three wild taxa of P. sativum L. showed high number of specific RAPD markers, reflecting similarities among these taxa and their differences from other genotypes. The use of RAPD markers linked to qualitative morphological characters in breeding programs makes the selection for these characters easy and possible at the young seedling stage without reaching the maturation stage.
Key words: Pisum sativum, seed storage proteins, random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) markers, numerical analysis.
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