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Keywords:

  • barbed goatgrass;
  • containment strategy;
  • crop-to-wild gene flow;
  • genetically modified wheat;
  • genome-specific introgression;
  • hybridization;
  • mapped EST-SSR;
  • transgene escape

Abstract

Introgression of sequences from crop species in wild relatives is of fundamental and practical concern. Here, we address gene flow between cultivated wheat and its widespread polyploid relative, Aegilops triuncialis, using 12 EST-SSR markers mapped on wheat chromosomes. The presence of wheat diagnostic alleles in natural populations of the barbed goatgrass growing in proximity to cultivated fields highlights that substantial gene flow occurred when both species coexisted. Furthermore, loci from the A subgenome of wheat were significantly less introgressed than sequences from other subgenomes, indicating differential introgression into Ae. triuncialis. Gene flow between such species sharing nonhomeologous chromosomes addresses the evolutionary outcomes of hybridization and may be important for efficient gene containment.