Comparative physical mapping of the 5S and 18S-25S rDNA in nine wild Hordeum species and cytotypes

S. Taketa, G. E. Harrison, J. S. Heslop-Harrison

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122 Citations (Scopus)


The physical locations of the 5S and 18S-25S rDNA sequences were examined in nine wild Hordeum species and cytotypes by double-target in situ hybridization using digoxigenin-labelled 5S rDNA and biotin-labelled 18S-25S rDNA as probes. H. vulgare ssp. spontaneum (2n = 2x = 14; I-genome) had a similar composition of 5S and 18S-25S rDNA to cultivated barley (H. vulgare ssp. vulgare, I-genome), with two major 18S-25S rDNA sites and minor sites on four of the other five chromosomes; three chromosomes had 5S rDNA sites. The closely related H. bulbosum (2x; also I-genome) showed only one pair of 5S rDNA sites and one pair of 18S-25S rDNA sites on different chromosomes. Four wild diploid species, H. marinum (X-genome), H. glaucum and H. murinum (Y-genomes) and H. chilense (H-genome), differed in the number (2-3 pairs), location, and relative order of 5S and the one or two major 18S-25S rDNA sites, but no minor 18S-25S rDNA sites were observed. H. murinum 4x had three chromosome pairs carrying 5S rDNA, while the diploid had only a single pair. Two other tetraploid species, H. brachyantherum 4x and H. brevisubulatum 4x (both considered to have H-type genomes), had minor 18S-25S rDNA sites, as well as the major sites. Unusual double 5S rDNA sites two sites on one chromosome arm separated by a short distance - were found in the American H-genome species, H. chilense and H. brachyantherum 4x. The results indicate that the species H. brachyantherum 4x and H. brevisubulatum 4x have a complex evolutionary history, probably involving the multiplication of minor rDNA sites (as in H. vulgate sensu lato), or the incorporation of both I and H types of genome. The rDNA markers are useful for an investigation of chromosome evolution and phylogeny.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalTheoretical and Applied Genetics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • Barley
  • Hordeum
  • In situ hybridization
  • Karyotype evolution
  • RDNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Genetics


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