Genetic diversity of Galium cracoviense Ehrend. (Rubiaceae)- the Polish endemic plant

Elżbieta Cieślak, Zbigniew Szeląg

Abstract


Genetic diversity of Galium cracoviense, a narrow endemic species, limited to the small area in southern Poland and concentrated on Jurassic limestone outcrops near Częstochowa, was examined using the AFLP marker. Twenty nine individuals from three spatially isolated populations were used for the study. AFLP analysis yielded 157 bands, of which 110 (70%) were polymorphic. The AMOVA analysis revealed a substantially higher variation within populations (89.35%) than among them (10.65%). Values of parameters describing population genetic diversity, such as Shannon index and gene diversity index estimated for each population, were highly similar. The results indicate a high level of genetic polymorphism as well as a high genetic similarity of the isolated populations of G. cracoviense and thus an unconstrained gene flow between them. Based on the results we conclude that additional demographic and genetic studies, are necessary to monitor potential decrease of populations size resulting mainly from the mechanical destruction of plants and their habitats caused by intense tourism. Due to the small general range of occurrence, conservation should include the highest possible number of populations of G. cracoviense.

Keywords


AFLP; Galium cracoviense; gene flow; genetic diversity; isolated populations; narrow endemic species; glacial relicts; Poland

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