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Morphological and Molecular Differentiation between Quercus petraea (Matt.) Liebl. and Quercus pubescens Willd. (Fagaceae) in Northern and Central Italy

PIERO BRUSCHI, GIOVANNI G. VENDRAMIN, FILIPPO BUSSOTTI and PAOLO GROSSONI
Annals of Botany
Vol. 85, No. 3 (March 2000), pp. 325-333
Published by: Oxford University Press
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/42770646
Page Count: 9
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Morphological and Molecular Differentiation between Quercus petraea (Matt.) Liebl. and Quercus pubescens Willd. (Fagaceae) in Northern and Central Italy
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Abstract

Quercus petraea (Matt.) Liebl. and Q. pubescens Willd. are two closely related taxa. No specific single marker, either morphological or molecular, has been identified to distinguish the two species until now. In the present study morphoanatomical and molecular traits (simple sequence repeats = SSR loci) were investigated in an attempt to characterize and to discriminate between these two oak species. At the morphological level, the applied statistics (nested ANOVA and discriminant analysis) suggest that the micromorphological features are the most effective for this purpose. The wide range of macromorphological variation observed can confound the classification of many individuals into either Q. petraea and Q. pubescens. Analysis of microsatellite data indicates that most of the genetic variation is contained within, rather than between, species. The lack of molecular divergence could be attributed to either relatively rapid and recent differentiation or to extensive hybridization following secondary contact of the taxa.

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