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Keywords:

  • candidate gene;
  • nucleotide variation;
  • Pinus;
  • selection;
  • wood formation

Summary

  • • 
    Nucleotide diversity in eight genes related to wood formation was investigated in two pine species, Pinus pinaster and P. radiata.
  • • 
    The nucleotide diversity patterns observed and their properties were compared between the two species according to the specific characteristics of the samples analysed.
  • • 
    A lower diversity was observed in P. radiata compared with P. pinaster. In particular, for two genes (Pp1, a glycin-rich protein homolog and CesA3, a cellulose synthase) the magnitude of the reduction of diversity potentially indicates the action of nonneutral factors. For both, particular patterns of nucleotide diversity were observed in P. pinaster (high genetic differentiation for Pp1 and close to zero differentiation associated with positive Tajima's D-value for CesA3). In addition, KORRIGAN, a gene involved in cellulose–hemicellulose assembly, demonstrated a negative Tajima's D-value in P. radiata accompanied by a high genetic differentiation in P. pinaster.
  • • 
    The consistency of the results obtained at the nucleotide level, together with the physiological roles of the genes analysed, indicate their potential susceptibility to artificial and/or natural selection.