Molecular markers are effective tools to investigate genetic diversity for resistance to pathogens. NBS (nucleotide-binding site) profiling is a OCR (polymerase chain reaction)-based approach to studying genetic variability that specifically targets chromosome regions containing R-genes and R-gene analogues. We used NBS profiling to measure genetic diversity among 58 accessions of durum wheat. Mean polymorphism rates detected using MseI and AluI as restriction enzymes were 34% and 22%, respectively. Mean number of polymorphisms per enzyme-primer combination was equal to 23.8 +/- 5.9, ranging from 13 to 31 polymorphic bands. In total, 96 markers over 190 indicated a good capacity to discriminate between accessions (the polymorphic index content ranging from 0.30 to 0.50). The results obtained with NBS profiling were compared with simple sequence repeat (SSR) and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) data of the same set of accessions. The genetic distances computed with 190 NBS profiling markers were in close agreement with those obtained with AFLP and SSR markers (r = 0.73 and 0.76, respectively). Our results indicate that NBS profiling provides an effective means to investigate genetic diversity in durum wheat.
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