The application of molecular mapping strategies to {\it Festuca\/} spp. (fine fescues)

Sardha Peiris Suriyapperuma, University of Rhode Island


The suitability of using various molecular methods of genetic fingerprinting for species, sub-species and cultivar identification of fine fescues, a cool-season turfgrass, was investigated because currently used morphological markers do not easily distinguish among them. The fine fescues included: Festuca rubra ssp. rubra (creeping red fescue), F. rubra ssp. commutata (Chewings fescue), F. ovina ssp. ovina (sheep fescue) and F. ovina ssp duriuscula (hard fescue). Fingerprinting methodologies tested include RAPD technology, RFLP fingerprinting with minisatellite probes such as an M13 bacteriophage probe, two human VNTR (Variable Number of Tandem Repeats) probes (33.6 and 33.15) and microsatellite probe (GATA)$\sb{\rm n}$. RAPD based markers proved to be superior to minisatellite markers in identifying species and subspecies RAPD analysis was less successful in distinguishing varieties within a species. Human probes yielded nonspecific hybridization patterns which prevented the identification of useful fingerprinting markers. The M13 probe gave rise to specific hybridizations, in contrast to the human probes, but was unable to distinguish between plants even at the species level. The microsatellite (GATA)$\sb{\rm n}$ proved to be the most versatile probe, since it could distinguish between varieties as well as between germplasm accessions, thus proving its potential use in genetic and other fingerprinting studies.^ We used RAPD-based molecular markers to study the inheritance of endophytic Acremonium association with turfgrass, an important turf trait. Initial studies based on RAPD amplification of DNA from Jamestown II (JT 2) endophytic Chewings fescue along with its non-endophytic parent Jamestown (JT 1) and endophytic parent LF1 parents with primer UBC # 322 revealed a 350 bp band specific to endophyte-containing plants. However, further work revealed that this band did not segregate with the presence of endophyte, indicating that it may not be associated with this characteristic. ^

Subject Area

Biology, Molecular|Biology, Botany|Biology, Genetics

Recommended Citation

Sardha Peiris Suriyapperuma, "The application of molecular mapping strategies to {\it Festuca\/} spp. (fine fescues)" (1996). Dissertations and Master's Theses (Campus Access). Paper AAI9702106.