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Doum palm (Hyphaene compressa) an important plant in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands has been successfully genotyped by sequencing

Doum palm (Hyphaene compressa) an important plant in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands has been successfully genotyped by sequencing

The doum palm (Hyphaene compressa), a semi-domesticated but important plant in the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASALs) of Kenya has been successfully genotyped by a multi-disciplinary team of Kenyan scientists. Prof Nancy Budambula of the University of Embu is part of the team that published the genetic diversity of doum palm using the genotyping by sequencing approach in Frontiers in Genetics impact factor 4.599 in 2022. The other members of team are Dr Cecilia Mweu, Dr Johnstone Neondo, Ms Agnes Omire and Mr Stephen Ogada from JKUAT, and Prof Laura Wangai of Kirinyaga University. Whereas the plant provides food, medicine and building materials among other uses, there have been no concerted efforts to improve the plant and its genetic diversity has remained largely unknown. The genotyping by sequencing approach identified single nucleotide polymorphisms which were used to assess the genetic diversity and population structure of 96 doum palm accessions from different ASAL regions of Kenya. The 96 accessions clustered into two groups.  The accessions from the Northern region comprised Cluster 1 while accessions from Eastern and Coastal regions comprised Cluster 2. Mixed ancestry from Cluster 1 and Cluster 2 was observed in accessions from Kwale. This study provides the baseline information required for selection, breeding and conservation of doum palm.

This article is a summary of a published paper entitled “Genetic Diversity and Population Structure of Doum Palm (Hyphaene compressa) Using Genotyping by Sequencing” published in Frontiers in Genetics and is available via the link https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fgene.2022.762202/full

The sequences of the 96 doum palm accessions from Kenya have been published and are archived at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) SRA under BioProject accession number PRJNA756042 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/bioproject/PRJNA756042/)

Sequences for individual accessions are available and can accessed using the link

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sra?linkname=bioproject_sra_all&from_uid=756042

The findings in this article are part of the ongoing doum palm research that is funded by the National Research Fund (NRF) Kenya.

Additional publications from the doum palm project can be accessed using the links provided.

Scientifica https://doi.org/10.1155/2020/4920830

Ethnobotany Research and Applications, https://ethnobotanyjournal.org/index.php/era/article/view/1907