Analysis of breadfruit domestication (Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae)
Breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis, Moraceae), a traditional staple crop in Oceania, is poised to become an important international crop in the coming century, with major implications for food security in the tropical developing world. Previous research by Zerega et al. identified the wild progenitor of breadfruit (A. camansi) as well as a domestication gradient from New Guinea east into Polynesia. This project will use chloroplast DNA microsatellites to build a high-resolution haplotype network for breadfruit to reveal the pedigrees and relationships of cultivars in the worlds largest breadfruit germplasm collection maintained by the Breadfruit Institute of the National Tropical Botanical Garden. This project has the potential to develop a highly detailed map of breadfruit domestication, enabling fine-scale analysis of morphological and other changes during the domestication process. The project will largely consist of DNA extraction, PCR amplification of microsatellite loci, microsatellite analysis on a Beckmann capillary-action DNA analyzer, and analysis of microsatellite data using bioinformatic tools.