Ensete (Ensete ventricosum) is an important perennial species in Ethiopia. It is used for food and fiber. The mode of propagation is asexual and sexual. Asexual form of reproduction is by natural and anthropogenic induced sucker. This research aims to investigate and measure the methylation diversity of natural and anthropogenic induced sucker forming Ensete. Twenty-seven individuals from Hawassa University research collection were used to identify using Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphisms (AFLPs) and Methylation-Sensitive Amplification Length Polymorphism (MS-AFLP).technology. The average values of Nei's genetic diversity (Hj) were 0.189 and 0.110 for natural sucker forming and anthropogenic induced sucker forming, respectively by AFLPs analysis. With MS-AFLP analysis, this value reduced to 0.145 for natural sucker forming Ensete but increased to 0.172 for anthropogenic sucker inducing populations. The AFLP Shannon information index (Ho) was 0.313 and 0.162 for natural and anthropogenic sucker forming Ensete, respectively. However, this value was reduced to 0.238 for natural sucker forming and 0.252 for anthropogenic sucker formed by the MS-AFLP analysis. UPGMA tree, structure analysis and principal coordinate analysis (PCoA) showed the two populations clustered separately. AMOVA revealed 24% of the genetic differentiation (Fst) occurred among populations. Gene flow (Nm) was limited among all populations. This concludes that AFLP did not show differentiation among populations; however MS-AFLP clearly showed the differentiation of populations which is an indication of epigenetic diversity but limited to developmental stages of Ensete.
Key words: Methylation, Ensete ventricosum, sucker, Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphisms (AFLPs), Methylation-Sensitive Amplification Length Polymorphism (MS-AFLP).
NE, Anthropogenic sucker inducing; ET, Natural sucker inducing; EB, sucker on the dead leaves; MB, Emerging bud; ML, emerged young shoot; D, seedling plant 1 to 9; M, Entada mother; K, Koba; G, Ganticha; A, Addo; AB, Abebe; W, Wild.
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