Development and validation of 697 novel polymorphic genomic and EST-SSR markers in the American cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon Ait.)
The American cranberry, Vaccinium macrocarpon Ait., is an economically important North American fruit crop that is consumed because of its unique flavor and potential health benefits. However, a lack of abundant, genome-wide molecular markers has limited the adoption of modern molecular assisted selection approaches in cranberry breeding programs. To increase the number of available markers in the species, this study identified, tested, and validated microsatellite markers from existing nuclear and transcriptome sequencing data. In total, new primers were designed, synthesized, and tested for 979 SSR loci; 697 of the markers amplified allele patterns consistent with single locus segregation in a diploid organism and were considered polymorphic. Of the 697 polymorphic loci, 507 were selected for additional genetic diversity and segregation analyses in 29 cranberry genotypes. More than 95% of the 507 loci did not display segregation distortion at the p < 0.05 level, and contained moderate to high levels of polymorphism with a polymorphic information content >0.25. This comprehensive collection of developed and validated microsatellite loci represents a substantial addition to the molecular tools available for geneticists, genomicists, and breeders in cranberry and Vaccinium.
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