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Research Abstracts Online
January 2009 - March 2010

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University of Minnesota Twin Cities
College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resource Sciences
Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics

PI: Peter L. Morrell

Nucleotide-sequence-based Estimates of Diversity and Recombination Rates in the Wild Barley Relative, Hordeum bulbosum

Breeding systems have a dramatic impact on the effectiveness of recombination within plant and animal populations. Parametric estimates of recombination rate in the self-fertilizing species Hordeum vulgare (barley) suggest that a history of inbreeding in the species has not dramatically reduced the amount of recombination or extent of linkage disequilibrium in the species relative to that observed in many outcrossing plant species. The limited impact of inbreeding may result from a relatively recent transition to self-fertilization in barley. By comparing resequencing data in Hordeum bulbosum, a self-incompatible species that is the closest living relative of barley, these researchers hope to determine the likely ancestral levels of recombinational diversity within the lineage. Using resequencing data to estimate both a potential ancestral recombination rate and the divergence time between H. bulbosum and H. vulgare, it will be possible to estimate the transition time of transition to self-fertilization in barley. This transition had a major effect on genetic diversity and composition of one of the world’s most important crops.

Group Member

Ana Maria Gonzales Berrios, Undergraduate Student