A SNP and SSR based genetic map of asparagus bean (Vigna. unguiculata ssp. sesquipedialis) and comparison with the broader species
Asparagus bean (Vigna. unguiculata ssp. sesquipedialis) is a distinctive subspecies of cowpea [Vigna. unguiculata (L.) Walp.] that apparently originated in East Asia and is characterized by extremely long and thin pods and an aggressive climbing growth habit. The crop is widely cultivated throughout Asia for the production of immature pods known as 'long beans' or 'asparagus beans'. While the genome of cowpea ssp. unguiculata has been characterized recently by high-density genetic mapping and partial sequencing, little is known about the genome of asparagus bean. We report here the first genetic map of asparagus bean based on SNP and SSR markers. The current map consists of 375 loci mapped onto 11 linkage groups (LGs), with 191 loci detected by SNP markers and 184 loci by SSR markers. The overall map length is 745 cM, with an average marker distance of 1.98 cM. There are four high marker-density blocks distributed on three LGs and three regions of segregation distortion (SDRs) identified on two other LGs, two of which co-locate in chromosomal regions syntenic to SDRs in soybean. Synteny between asparagus bean and the model legume Lotus. japonica was also established. This work provides the basis for mapping and functional analysis of genes/QTLs of particular interest in asparagus bean, as well as for comparative genomics study of cowpea at the subspecies level.
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