The Journal of Horticultural Science & Biotechnology
Vol. 85 No: 1
Molecular characterisation of Vesuvian apricot cultivars: implications for the certification and authentication of protected plant material
R. RAO, M. BENCIVENNI, M. LA MURA, T. ARAUJO-BURGOS and G. CORRADO
In the EU, the production of local varieties with well-known quality characteristics may be defended by a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) or a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) label.
Although the award of either status is based on meeting a number of conditions, the registration, distinction, and protection of such plant material is based on morphological traits.
Here, using seven SSR and four AFLP primer pairs, we report on the molecular characterisation of a group of 36 traditional apricot (Prunus armeniaca) varieties from southern Italy.
This group included all the varieties approved for the “Albicocca Vesuviana” (Vesuvian Apricot) PGI label.
Cluster analysis, based on genetic distances, clearly differentiated the 11 PGI cultivars from the other genotypes.
Nonetheless, among the 11 PGI-cultivars, two pairs were found to have identical SSR and AFLP profiles.
In addition, molecular analysis indicated the presence of mis-labelling and erroneous denominations of trees from the PGI area.
The data revealed that DNA fingerprinting should be always deployed to complement the use of morphological traits in the description of plant material during the institution of a PDO or PGI label, and to evaluate the presence of genetic inconsistencies in orchards.
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