Genetic diversity of maize genotypes on the basis of morpho-physiological and simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers
In this investigation, an attempt was made to assess the genetic diversity among 91 maize (Zea mays L.) genotypes using morpho-physiological and molecular markers. Variability was observed for six morpho-physiological traits namely, SPAD chlorophyll meter reading, canopy temperature, plant height, yield per plant, fodder yield and plant biomass as well as with simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers. All the amplification products with 40 SSRs were in the range of 58 to 410 bp. A total of 124 alleles were generated and the number of alleles scored for 40 SSR loci ranged from 2 to 5 with a mean of 3.1 alleles per locus. Polymorphism information content ranged from 0.054 to 0.82 with a mean of 0.55 suggesting that all the selected genotypes possessed high level of polymorphism. The study indicates that five genotypes, RJR-247, RJR-159, NSJ-179, RJR-55 and Z101-15 were most diverse, so it is suggested that they may be used as genetic resources for maize improvement programme in future quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping for different agronomic traits and for developing new varieties with adaptation to a broad range of environments.
Key words: Maize, SSR markers, genetic diversity, dendrogram.