Analysis of Genetic Diversity in Poeciloneuron pauciflorum Bedd.―An Endemic Tree Species from the Western Ghats of India


Poeciloneuron pauciflorum is a narrow endemic having highly restricted distribution in the southern-western Ghats region of India. 18 accessions of P. pauciflorum collected from four different locations were analyzed for genetic variation using 20 random primers. Out of 141 amplicons generated, 130 of them were polymorphic (92.20% polymorphism). Contrary to the general concept of low genetic variation associated with endemic plant species, P. pauciflorum exhibits high genetic diversity as the similarity index value based on Nei & Li’s similarity coefficient ranges from 0.36 to 0.95 with mean GS = 0.72 and Shannon’s information measure (0.43). Cluster analysis showed grouping of all accessions from the State of Tamil Nadu into two major clusters with few outliers while those from the State of Kerala also clustered with them. Accessions from Kalliankadu forest segment harbors maximum diversity as indicated by various genetic diversity indices like h, I, Ht, Hs, Gst, PL and hence this site is recommended for in situ conservation of this narrow endemic. The main factors responsible for the high level of genetic diversity among accessions are probably related to the reproductive isolation and ecological breadth. The strong genetic variability among accessions indicates that the management for the conservation of the genetic diversity in P. pauciflorum should aim to preserve every accession. The present study assumes significance as it negotiates endemism and genetic variation in tree species, a global phenomenon having wide implications in species diversity and conservation.

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Pillai, P. , Sajan, J. , Menon, K. , Hemanthakumar, A. , Pandurangan, A. , Krishnan, P. and Seeni, S. (2011) Analysis of Genetic Diversity in Poeciloneuron pauciflorum Bedd.―An Endemic Tree Species from the Western Ghats of India. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 2, 416-424. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2011.23047.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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