RFLP-based assay of Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench genetic diversity. Academic Article uri icon


  • Sixty-two single-copy sorghum DNA clones were used to compare restriction fragment patterns of 53 sorghum accessions from Africa, Asia and the United States. Included were accessions from five morphological races of the cultivated subspecies bicolor, and four races of the wild subspecies verticilliflorum. From two to twelve alleles were detected with each probe. There was greater nuclear diversity in the wild subspecies (255 alleles in ten accessions) than in the domestic accessions (236 alleles in 37 accessions). Overall, 204 of the 340 alleles (60%) that were detected occurred in both subspecies. Phylogenetic analysis using parsimony separated the subspecies into separate clusters, with one group of intermediate accessions. Though exceptions were common, especially for the race bicolor, accessions classified as the same morphological race tended to group together on the basis of RFLP similarities. Selection for traits such as forage quality may have led to accessions genetically more similar to other races being classified as bicolors, which have a loose, small-grained panicle similar to wild races. Population statistics, calculated using four nuclear and four cytoplasmic probes that detect two alleles each, revealed a low but significant amount of heterozygosity, and showed little differentiation in alleles in the wild and cultivated subspecies. Outcrossing with foreign pollen appears to have been more important than migration via seed dispersal as a mechanism for gene flow between the wild and domestic accessions included in this study.

published proceedings

  • Theor Appl Genet

author list (cited authors)

  • Cui, Y. X., Xu, G. W., Magill, C. W., Schertz, K. F., & Hart, G. E.

citation count

  • 46

complete list of authors

  • Cui, YX||Xu, GW||Magill, CW||Schertz, KF||Hart, GE

publication date

  • May 1995