Environmental, phenotypic and genetic variation of wild barley (Hordeum spontaneum) from Israel

T. K. Vanhala, C. P.E. Van Rijn, J. Buntjer, P. Stam, E. Nevo, H. Poorter, F. A. Van Eeuwijk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Wild relatives of crop plants offer an attractive gene pool for cultivar improvement. We evaluated genetic and phenotypic variation for a set of 72 Israeli accessions of wild barley from 21 populations. These populations were grouped further into four ecotypes. In addition, environmental variables describing the local conditions for the populations were used to infer the environmental divergence. Genetic, phenotypic and environmental distances were estimated from the data and UPGMA dendrograms constructed. The results showed that genetic variation was larger between populations than within them, whereas for phenotypic measurements variation was larger within populations than between them. No significant correlation was found between genetic and phenotypic similarities, or between phenotypic and environmental similarities, whereas a weak correlation between genetic and environmental similarities was detected. Twenty-three AFLP-markers were identified to be ecotype specific. Chromosomal location was known for five of these markers. Four of the five ecotype specific markers were correlated with both phenotypic traits and environmental variables.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)297-309
Number of pages13
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2004

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study has been funded by the Earth and Life Science Foundation (ALW) which is subsidised by the Netherlands’ Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). E. Nevo would like to thank the Ancell Teicher Foundation of Molecular Genetics and Evolution for financial support.


  • AFLP
  • Hordeum spontaneum
  • variation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics
  • Plant Science
  • Horticulture


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