Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Genetic erosion in crops: concept, research results and challenges

  • Mark van de Wouw (a1), Chris Kik (a1), Theo van Hintum (a1), Rob van Treuren (a1) and Bert Visser (a1)...
Abstract

The loss of variation in crops due to the modernization of agriculture has been described as genetic erosion. The current paper discusses the different views that exist on the concept of genetic erosion in crops. Genetic erosion of cultivated diversity is reflected in a modernization bottleneck in the diversity levels that occurred during the history of the crop. Two stages in this bottleneck are recognized: the initial replacement of landraces by modern cultivars; and further trends in diversity as a consequence of modern breeding practices. Genetic erosion may occur at three levels of integration: crop, variety and allele. The different approaches in the recent literature to measure genetic erosion in crops are reviewed. Genetic erosion as reflected in a reduction of allelic evenness and richness appears to be the most useful definition, but has to be viewed in conjunction with events at variety level. According to the reviewed literature, the most likely scenario of diversity trends during modernization is the following: a reduction in diversity due to the replacement of landraces by modern cultivars, but no further reduction after this replacement has been completed.

Copyright
Corresponding author
*Corresponding author. E-mail: markvandewouw@yahoo.co.uk
References
Hide All
RW Allard (1996) Genetic basis of the evolution of adaptedness in plants. Euphytica 92: 111.

MI Almanza-Pinzon , M Khairallah , PN Fox and ML Warburton (2003) Comparison of molecular markers and coefficients of parentage for the analysis of genetic diversity among spring bread wheat accessions. Euphytica 130: 7786.

D Bardsley and I Thomas (2005) Valuing local wheat landraces for agrobiodiversity conservation in Northeast Turkey. Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 106: 407412.

MB Barry , JL Pham , S Beavogui , A Ghesquiere and N Ahmadi (2008) Diachronic (1979–2003) analysis of rice genetic diversity in Guinea did not reveal genetic erosion. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 55: 723733.

E Bitocchi , L Nanni , M Rossi , D Rau , E Bellucci , A Giardini , A Buonamici , GG Vendramin and R Papa (2009) Introgression from modern hybrid varieties into landrace populations of maize (Zea mays ssp. mays L.) in central Italy. Molecular Ecology 18: 603621.

A Bonifacio (2003) Chenopodium sp.: genetic resources, ethnobotany, and geographic distribution. Food Reviews International 19: 17.

JP Brennan and PN Fox (1998) Impact of CIMMYT varieties on the genetic diversity of wheat in Australia, 1973–1993. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 49: 175178.

J Brinckmann and E Smith (2004) Maca culture of the Junin plateau. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 10: 426430.

S Brush , R Kesseli , R Ortega , P Cisneros , K Zimmerer and C Quiros (1995) Potato diversity in the Andean center of crop domestication. Conservation Biology 9: 11891198.

A Buerkert , M Oryakhail , AA Filatenko and K Hammer (2006) Cultivation and taxonomic classification of wheat landraces in the upper Panjsher valley of Afghanistan after 23 years of war. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 53: 9197.

AL Caicedo , SH Williamson , RD Hernandez , A Boyko , A Fledel-Alon , TL York , NR Polato , KM Olsen , R Nielsen , SR McCouch , CD Bustamante and MD Purugganan (2007) Genome-wide patterns of nucleotide polymorphism in domesticated rice. PLos Genetics 3: 17451756.

MJ Christiansen , SB Andersen and R Ortiz (2002) Diversity changes in an intensively bred wheat germplasm during the 20th century. Molecular Breeding 9: 111.

RM Clark , E Linton , J Messing and JF Doebley (2004) Pattern of diversity in the genomic region near the maize domestication gene tb1. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 101: 700707.

TV Dobrotvorskaya , SP Martynov and VA Pukhalskyi (2004) Trends in genetic diversity change of spring bread wheat cultivars released in Russia in 1929–2003. Russian Journal of Genetics 40: 12451257.

JF Doebley , BS Gaut and BD Smith (2006) The molecular genetics of crop domestication. Cell 127: 13091321.

NC Ellstrand and DR Elam (1993) Population genetic consequences of small population size – implications for plant conservation. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 24: 217242.

W Erskine , S Chandra , M Chaudhry , IA Malik , A Sarker , B Sharma , M Tufail and MC Tyagi (1998) A bottleneck in lentil: widening its genetic base in south Asia. Euphytica 101: 207211.

RE Evenson (2003) Production impacts of crop genetic improvement. In: RE Evenson and D Gollin (eds) Crop Variety Improvement and Its Effect on Productivity, The Impact of International Agricultural Research. Wallingford: CABI publishing, pp. 447471.

YB Fu , GW Peterson and MJ Morrison (2007) Genetic diversity of Canadian soybean cultivars and exotic germplasm revealed by simple sequence repeat markers. Crop Science 47: 19471954.

YB Fu , GW Peterson , KW Richards , D Somers , RM DePauw and JM Clarke (2005) Allelic reduction and genetic shift in the Canadian hard red spring wheat germplasm released from 1845 to 2004. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 110: 15051516.

YB Fu , GW Peterson , G Scoles , B Rossnagel , DJ Schoen and KW Richards (2003) Allelic diversity changes in 96 Canadian oat cultivars released from 1886 to 2001. Crop Science 43: 19891995.

YB Fu , GW Peterson , JK Yu , LF Gao , JZ Jia and KW Richards (2006) Impact of plant breeding on genetic diversity of the Canadian hard red spring wheat germplasm as revealed by EST-derived SSR markers. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 112: 12391247.

LZ Gao (2003) The conservation of Chinese rice biodiversity: genetic erosion, ethnobotany and prospects. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 50: 1732.

P Gepts (2006) Plant genetic resources conservation and utilization: the accomplishments and future of a societal insurance policy. Crop Science 46: 22782292.

K Hammer and K Khoshbakht (2005) Towards a ’red list’ for crop plant species. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 52: 249265.

K Hammer , H Knupffer , L Xhuveli and P Perrino (1996) Estimating genetic erosion in landraces – two case studies. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 43: 329336.

K Hammer and G Laghetti (2005) Genetic erosion – examples from Italy. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 52: 629634.

C Hao , L Wang , X Zhang , G You , Y Dong , J Jia , X Liu , X Shang , S Liu and Y Cao (2006a) Genetic diversity in Chinese modern wheat varieties revealed by microsatellite markers. Science in China, Series C: Life Sciences 49: 218226.

CY Hao , XY Zhang , LF Wang , YS Dong , XW Shang and JZ Jia (2006b) Genetic diversity and core collection evaluations in common wheat germplasm from the Northwestern Spring Wheat Region in China. Molecular Breeding 17: 6977.

JR Harlan (1975) Our vanishing genetic resources. Science 188: 618621.

JR Harlan and JMJ de Wet (1971) Toward a rational classification of cultivated plants. Taxon 20: 509517.

G Heal , B Walker , S Levin , K Arrow , P Dasgupta , G Daily , P Ehrlich , KG Maler , N Kautsky , J Lubchenco , S Schneider and D Starrett (2004) Genetic diversity and interdependent crop choices in agriculture. Resource and Energy Economics 26: 175184.

S Hernandez-Verdugo , R Luna-Reyes and K Oyama (2001) Genetic structure and differentiation of wild and domesticated populations of Capsicum annuum (Solanaceae) from Mexico. Plant Systematics and Evolution 226: 129142.

XQ Huang , M Wolf , MW Ganal , S Orford , RMD Koebner and MS Roder (2007) Did modern plant breeding lead to genetic erosion in European winter wheat varieties? Crop Science 47: 343349.

DL Hyten , QJ Song , YL Zhu , IY Choi , RL Nelson , JM Costa , JE Specht , RC Shoemaker and PB Cregan (2006) Impacts of genetic bottlenecks on soybean genome diversity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 103: 1666616671.

R Ishikawa , S Yamanaka , Y Fukuta , S Chitrakon , C Bounphanousay , K Kanyavong , LH Tang , I Nakamura , T Sato and YI Sato (2006) Genetic erosion from modern varieties into traditional upland rice cultivars (Oryza sativa L.) in northern Thailand. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 53: 245252.

DI Jarvis and T Hodgkin (1999) Wild relatives and crop cultivars: detecting natural introgression and farmer selection of new genetic combinations in agroecosystems. Molecular Ecology 8: S159S173.

DR Jordan , YZ Tao , ID Godwin , RG Henzell , M Cooper and CL McIntyre (1998) Loss of genetic diversity associated with selection for resistance to sorghum midge in Australian sorghum. Euphytica 102: 17.

C Kik , AM Samoylov , WHJ Verbeek , LWD Van Raamsdonk and DNA Mitochondrial (1997) variation and crossability of leek (Allium porrum) and its wild relatives from the Allium ampeloprasum complex. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 94: 465471.

G Kochert , HT Stalker , M Gimenes , L Galgaro , CR Lopes and K Moore (1996) RFLP and cytogenetic evidence on the origin and evolution of allotetraploid domesticated peanut, Arachis hypogaea (Leguminosae). American Journal of Botany 83: 12821291.

A Kolodinska Brantestam , R von Bothmer , C Dayteg , I Rashal , S Tuvesson and J Weibull (2004) Inter simple sequence repeat analysis of genetic diversity and relationships in cultivated barley of Nordic and Baltic origin. Hereditas 141: 186192.

T Kurosaki (2003) Specialization and diversification in agricultural transformation: the case of West Punjab,1903–92. American Journal of Agricultural Economics 85: 372386.

DA Landis , MM Gardiner , W van der Werf and SM Swinton (2008) Increasing corn for biofuel production reduces biocontrol in agricultural landscapes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 105: 2055220557.

V Le Clerc , V Cadot , M Canadas , J Lallemand , D Guerin and F Boulineau (2006) Indicators to assess temporal genetic diversity in the French Catalogue: no losses for maize and peas. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 113: 11971209.

T Lelley , M Stachel , H Grausgruber and J Vollmann (2000) Analysis of relationships between Aegilops tauschii and the D genome of wheat utilizing microsatellites. Genome 43: 661668.

CS Levings (1990) The Texas cytoplasm of maize: cytoplasmic male sterility and disease susceptibility. Science 250: 942947.

D Louette and M Smale (2000) Farmers' seed selection practices and traditional maize varieties in Cuzalapa, Mexico. Euphytica 113: 2541.

L Malysheva-Otto , MW Ganal , JR Law , JC Reeves and MS Roder (2007) Temporal trends of genetic diversity in European barley cultivars (Hordeum vulgare L.). Molecular Breeding 20: 309322.

MM Manifesto , AR Schlatter , HE Hopp , EY Suarez and J Dubcovsky (2001) Quantitative evaluation of genetic diversity in wheat germplasm using molecular markers. Crop Science 41: 682690.

MK Maredia , D Byerlee and P Pee (2000) Impacts of food crop improvement research: evidence from sub-Saharan Africa. Food Policy 25: 531559.

V Martos , C Royo , Y Rharrabti and LFG del Moral (2005) Using AFLPs to determine phylogenetic relationships and genetic erosion in durum wheat cultivars released in Italy and Spain throughout the 20th century. Field Crops Research 91: 107116.

SP Martynov , TV Dobrotvorskaya and VA Pukhalskiy (2005) Analysis of genetic diversity of spring durum wheat (Triticum durum Desf.) cultivars released in Russia in 1929–2004. Russian Journal of Genetics 41: 11131122.

SP Martynov , TV Dobrotvorskaya and VA Pukhalskiy (2006) Dynamics of genetic diversity in winter common wheat Triticum aestivum L. cultivars released in Russia from 1929 to 2005. Russian Journal of Genetics 42: 11371147.

PJ Maughan , MA Saghai Maroof , GR Buss and GM Huestis (1996) Amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) in soybean: species diversity, inheritance, and near-isogenic line analysis. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 93: 392401.

GP Nabhan (2007) Agrobiodiversity change in a Saharan desert oasis, 1919–2006: historic shifts in Tasiwit (Berber) and Bedouin crop inventories of Siwa, Egypt. Economic Botany 61: 3143.

A Negash , A Tsegaye , R van Treuren and B Visser (2002) AFLP analysis of enset clonal diversity in south and southwestern Ethiopia for conservation. Crop Science 42: 11051111.

M Nei (1973) Analysis of gene diversity in subdivided populations. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 70: 33213323.

LG Nersting , SB Andersen , R von Bothmer , M Gullord and RB Jorgensen (2006) Morphological and molecular diversity of Nordic oat through one hundred years of breeding. Euphytica 150: 327337.

K Palaisa , M Morgante , S Tingey and A Rafalski (2004) Long-range patterns of diversity and linkage disequilibrium surrounding the maize Y1 gene are indicative of an asymmetric selective sweep. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 101: 98859890.

P Palladino (1990) The political economy of applied research: plant breeding in Great Britain, 1910–1940. Minerva 28: 446468.

HK Parzies , W Spoor and RA Ennos (2000) Genetic diversity of barley landrace accessions (Hordeum vulgare ssp vulgare) conserved for different lengths of time in ex situ gene banks. Heredity 84: 476486.

N Peroni and N Hanazaki (2002) Current and lost diversity of cultivated varieties, especially cassava, under swidden cultivation systems in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. Agriculture Ecosystems & Environment 92: 171183.

E Portis , A Acquadro , C Comino and S Lanteri (2004) Effect of farmers' seed selection on genetic variation of a landrace population of pepper (Capsicum annuum L.), grown in North-West Italy. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 51: 581590.

SR Prashanth , M Parani , BP Mohanty , V Talame , R Tuberosa and A Parida (2002) Genetic diversity in cultivars and landraces of Oryza sativa subsp indica as revealed by AFLP markers. Genome 45: 451459.

G Pressoir and J Berthaud (2004) Patterns of population structure in maize landraces from the Central Valleys of Oaxaca in Mexico. Heredity 92: 8894.

Y Qi , D Zhang , H Zhang , M Wang , J Sun , X Wei , Z Qiu , S Tang , Y Cao , X Wang and Z Li (2006) Genetic diversity of rice cultivars (Oryza sativa L.) in China and the temporal trends in recent fifty years. Chinese Science Bulletin 51: 681688.

DC Rasmusson and RL Phillips (1997) Plant breeding progress and genetic diversity from de novo variation and elevated epistasis. Crop Science 37: 303310.

JC Reif , S Hamrit , M Heckenberger , W Schipprack , HP Maurer , M Bohn and AE Melchinger (2005a) Trends in genetic diversity among European maize cultivars and their parental components during the past 50 years. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 111: 838845.

JC Reif , P Zhang , S Dreisigacker , ML Warburton , M van Ginkel , D Hoisington , M Bohn and AE Melchinger (2005b) Wheat genetic diversity trends during domestication and breeding. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 110: 859864.

V Roussel , J Koenig , M Beckert and F Balfourier (2004) Molecular diversity in French bread wheat accessions related to temporal trends and breeding programmes. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 108: 920930.

V Roussel , L Leisova , F Exbrayat , Z Stehno and F Balfourier (2005) SSR allelic diversity changes in 480 European bread wheat varieties released from 1840 to 2000. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 111: 162170.

M Smale (1997) The green revolution and wheat genetic diversity: Some unfounded assumptions. World Development 25: 12571269.

M Smale , MP Reynolds , M Warburton , B Skovmand , R Trethowan , RP Singh , I Ortiz-Monasterio and J Crossa (2002) Dimensions of diversity in modern spring bread wheat in developing countries from 1965. Crop Science 42: 17661779.

E Souza and ME Sorrells (1989) Pedigree analysis of North-American oat cultivars released from 1951 to 1985. Crop Science 29: 595601.

L Sperling (2001) The effect of the civil war on Rwanda's bean seed systems and unusual bean diversity. Biodiversity and Conservation 10: 9891009.

SD Tanksley and SR McCouch (1997) Seed banks and molecular maps: unlocking genetic potential from the wild. Science 277: 10631066.

MI Tenaillon , J U'Ren , O Tenaillon and BS Gaut (2004) Selection versus demography: A multilocus investigation of the domestication process in maize. Molecular Biology and Evolution 21: 12141225.

MJ Thomson , EM Septiningsih , F Suwardjo , TJ Santoso , TS Silitonga and SR McCouch (2007) Genetic diversity analysis of traditional and improved Indonesian rice (Oryza sativa L.) germplasm using microsatellite markers. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 114: 559568.

QZ Tian , RH Zhou and JZ Jia (2005) Genetic diversity trend of common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) in China revealed with AFLP markers. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 52: 325331.

B Tsegaye and T Berg (2007) Genetic erosion of Ethiopian tetraploid wheat landraces in Eastern Shewa, Central Ethiopia. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 54: 715726.

JL van Zanden (1991) The first green revolution: the growth of production and productivity in European agriculture, 1870–1914. The Economic History Review 44: 215239.

ML Warburton , J Crossa , J Franco , M Kazi , R Trethowan , S Rajaram , W Pfeiffer , P Zhang , S Dreisigacker and M van Ginkel (2006) Bringing wild relatives back into the family: recovering genetic diversity in CIMMYT improved wheat germplasm. Euphytica 149: 289301.

J White , JR Law , I MacKay , KJ Chalmers , JSC Smith , A Kilian and W Powell (2008) The genetic diversity of UK, US and Australian cultivars of Triticum aestivum measured by DArT markers and considered by genome. Theoretical and Applied Genetics 116: 439453.

L Willemen , X Scheldeman , VS Cabellos , SR Salazar and L Guarino (2007) Spatial patterns of diversity and genetic erosion of traditional cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz) in the Peruvian Amazon: An evaluation of socio-economic and environmental indicators. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution 54: 15991612.

GP Yang , MAS Maroof , CG Xu , QF Zhang and RM Biyashev (1994) Comparative-analysis of aicrosatellite DNA polymorphism in landraces and cultivars of rice. Molecular & General Genetics 245: 187194.

MA Zeder , E Emshwiller , BD Smith and DG Bradley (2006) Documenting domestication: the intersection of genetics and archaeology. Trends in Genetics 22: 139155.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Plant Genetic Resources
  • ISSN: 1479-2621
  • EISSN: 1479-263X
  • URL: /core/journals/plant-genetic-resources
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 20
Total number of PDF views: 143 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 907 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 17th October 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.