Assessment of the genetic diversity of Kenyan coconut germplasm using simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers
Genetic diversity and relationship among 48 coconut individuals (Cocos nucifera L.) collections from the Coastal lowland of Kenya were analyzed using 15 simple sequence repeat (SSR) primer pairs. Diversity parameters were calculated using Popgene Software version 1.31. The gene diversity values ranged from 0.0408 (CAC68) to 0.4861 (CAC23) with a mean value of 0.2839. The polymorphic information content (PIC) values ranged from 0.0400 to 0.3680 with a mean value of 0.2348. Marker CAC23 had the highest PIC and revealed highest gene diversity values in this study. Analysis of the molecular variation indicated that within individual variation was 98% while among materials, variation was low at 2% suggesting that molecular variation was not defined by region of production. Cluster analysis was constructed using DARwin program version 6.0. Forty eight (48) coconut individuals were clustered into three groups.
Keywords: Coconut palm (Cocos nucifera L., Arecaceae), germplasm, simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers, cluster analysis, diversity