Hydroponic Screening of Aluminium Tolerance and Genetic Diversity Analysis of Ethiopian finger millet (Eleusine coracana (L.) Gaertn) Genotypes as Revealed by Inter Simple Sequence Repeat (ISSR) Markers

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Addis Ababa University


Eleusine coracana commonly called finger millet, is an annual allotetraploid (2n=4x=36), that belongs to grass family Poaceae, subfamily Chloridoideae. Biotic and abiotic stress combined with the use of less productive local cultivars cause low production in Ethiopia. This research was aimed to investigate acidity tolerance and genetic diversity of finger millet accessions from Ethiopia. The study was done on 288 finger millet accessions obtained from Ethiopian Institute of Biodiversity and six national varieties from NARs for optimization and preliminary screening, while 80 accessions were used for further characterization and molecular diversity work. The optimal Al toxicity level identified was 112.50 μM. Variety Gute was found to be Al tolerant and used as tolerant standard, while variety Necho was found susceptible and used as susceptible standard. Shoot and root length (SL, RL) as well as total fresh weight (FW) were measured after eight days of germination, and root length was found to be seriously affected. Screening was carried out on 288 accessions along with the standard checks in six batches, 75 (26.04 %) of them were Al tolerant, while 213 (73.95 %) were from medium to susceptible. After characterization 63 (78.75 %) out of 80 accessions showed significant Al induced stress in root length, while no distinct and visible symptom of aluminum toxicity were observed in the shoot of finger millet genotypes. According to RTI 21 genotypes were classified as tolerant, 35 genotypes as susceptible, and 24 as intermediate. Analysis was also carried out to estimate the genetic diversity among and within accessions of finger millet using six ISSR primers. The total genetic diversity (H) and Shannon’s diversity information index (I) for the entire populations showed, 0.28, and 0.41, respectively. Individuals from Wellega, Gojam, Awi, and Zimbabwe showed the highest level of gene diversity similarly (H = 0.19, I = 0.28), while the lowest variability was shown by accessions from Omo (H = 0.05, I = 0.07). Variation within population was higher (58.54%) as compared to that of inter population (41.45%) based on AMOVA. Most individuals from all populations tended to form their own cluster, while only few of the individuals were distributed all over the tree. In PCO most of the individual accessions were clustered to their respective population. The result of the present study confirmed the presence of acid tolerant and genetically diversified accessions that can be used to improve the productivity as well as calls for a combined effort for the collection, conservation and sustainable use of finger millet. Keywords: Acidity, Eleusine coracana, genetic diversity, hydroponics, ISSR



Acidity, Eleusine coracana, genetic diversity, hydroponics, ISSR