Molecular fingerprinting of the Egyptian medicinal plant Cocculus pendulus
Background and aims: The genus Cocculus belongs to the family Menispermaceae which comprises about 35 species of shrubs or woody climbers. Only one species, Cocculus pendulus is found in Egypt. This plant is reported to have good medicinal values in traditional system of medicine. Despite the wide occurrence of C. pendulus in the Egyptian deserts, attention was paid only to its distribution and morphological description ignoring the biochemical constitution, the genome makeup and environmental aspects which are not given due consideration. Since no information about the genome of C. pendulus is available, the current study deals with molecular investigation of C. pendulus expressed by DNA fingerprinting of the young leaves of this plant using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) technique with four primer combinations.
The obtained results revealed a total of 228 bands with an average of 57 bands for each primer combination, of which 61 bands were polymorphic (26.8%) ranging in size from 59 to 570 bp. The number of amplicons/primer pairs ranged from 48 (E-AGG/M-CAC) to 72 (E-AAC/M-CAG) while the number of polymorphic amplicons varied from 13 to 21 with polymorphism percentage of 22.03–29.17%. Thus the average number of polymorphic fragments/combinations was 15. In this regard, the combination E-AGG/M-CAC was more efficient as confirmed by computing the discriminating power (D) of all primer combinations. Also, the AFLP marker gives a complete informative and highly discriminative picture about C. pendulus as shown by (PIC = 0.99).
Keywords: Cocculus pendulus; Gebel Elba; Eastern desert; DNA fingerprinting; Amplified fragment length polymorphism