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Use of Inter-Simple Sequence Repeats and Amplified Fragment Length Polymorphisms to Analyze Genetic Relationships Among Small Grain-Infecting Species of Ustilago

February 2003 , Volume 93 , Number  2
Pages  167 - 175

J. G. Menzies , G. Bakkeren , F. Matheson , J. D. Procunier , and S. Woods

First, third, fourth, and fifth authors: Cereal Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 195 Dafoe Road, Winnipeg, MB, Canada, R3T 2M9; and second author: Pacific Agri-Food Research Centre, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Highway 97, Summerland, BC, Canada, V0H 1Z0

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Accepted for publication 23 September 2002.

In the smut fungi, few features are available for use as taxonomic criteria (spore size, shape, morphology, germination type, and host range). DNA-based molecular techniques are useful in expanding the traits considered in determining relationships among these fungi. We examined the phylogenetic relationships among seven species of Ustilago (U. avenae, U. bullata, U. hordei, U. kolleri, U. nigra, U. nuda, and U. tritici) using inter-simple sequence repeats (ISSRs) and amplified fragment length polymorphisms (AFLPs) to compare their DNA profiles. Fifty-four isolates of different Ustilago spp. were analyzed using ISSR primers, and 16 isolates of Ustilago were studied using AFLP primers. The variability among isolates within species was low for all species except U. bullata. The isolates of U. bullata, U. nuda, and U. tritici were well separated and our data supports their speciation. U. avenae and U. kolleri isolates did not separate from each other and there was little variability between these species. U. hordei and U. nigra isolates also showed little variability between species, but the isolates from each species grouped together. Our data suggest that U. avenae and U. kolleri are monophyletic and should be considered one species, as should U. hordei and U. nigra.

The American Phytopathological Society, 2003