Development of microsatellite markers in autopolyploid sugarcane and comparative analysis of conserved microsatellites in sorghum and sugarcane

Brandon T. James, Cuixia Chen, Arthur Rudolph, Kankshita Swaminathan, Jan E. Murray, Jong Kuk Na, Ashley K. Spence, Brandon Smith, Matthew E. Hudson, Stephen P. Moose, Ray Ming

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sugarcane has become an increasingly important first-generation biofuel crop in tropical and subtropical regions. It has a large, complex, polyploid genome that has hindered the progress of genomic research and marker-assisted selection. Genetic mapping and ultimately genome sequence assembly require a large number of DNA markers. Simple sequence repeats (SSRs) are widely used in genetic mapping because of their abundance, high rates of polymorphism, and ease of use. The objectives of this study were to develop SSR markers for construction of a saturated genetic map and to characterize the frequency and distribution of SSRs in a polyploid genome. SSR markers were mined from expressed sequence tag (EST), reduced representation library genomic sequences, and bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequences. A total of 5,675 SSR markers were surveyed in a segregating population. The overall successful amplification and polymorphic rates were 87. 9 and 16. 4%, respectively. The trinucleotide repeat motifs were most abundant, with tri- and hexanucleotide motifs being the most abundant for the ESTs. BAC and genomic SSRs were mostly AT-rich while the ESTs were relatively GC-rich due to codon bias. These markers were also aligned to the sorghum genome, resulting in 1,203 markers mapped in the sorghum genome. This set of SSRs conserved in sugarcane and sorghum would be the most informative for mapping quantitative trait loci in sugarcane and for comparative genomic analyses. This large collection of SSR markers is a valuable resource for sugarcane genomic research and crop improvement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)661-669
Number of pages9
JournalMolecular Breeding
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2012


  • DNA marker
  • Genetic mapping
  • Polyploid
  • Short sequence repeat

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science


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