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Plants 2018, 7(4), 103; https://doi.org/10.3390/plants7040103

Large Scale Phenotyping Provides Insight into the Diversity of Vegetative and Reproductive Organs in a Wide Collection of Wild and Domesticated Peppers (Capsicum spp.)

Research Centre for Vegetable and Ornamental Crops, CREA, 84098 Pontecagnano Faiano, Italy
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Received: 18 October 2018 / Revised: 13 November 2018 / Accepted: 18 November 2018 / Published: 19 November 2018
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Abstract

In the past years, the diversity of Capsicum has been mainly investigated through genetics and genomics approaches, fewer efforts have been made in the field of plant phenomics. Assessment of crop traits with high-throughput methodologies could enhance the knowledge of the plant phenome, giving at the same time a key contribution to the understanding of the function of many genes. In this study, a wide germplasm collection of 307 accessions retrieved from 48 world regions, and belonging to nine Capsicum species was characterized for 54 plant, leaf, flower and fruit traits. Conventional descriptors and semi-automated tools based on image analysis and colour coordinate detection were used. Significant differences were found among accessions, between species and between sweet and spicy cultivated types, revealing a large diversity. The results highlighted how the domestication process and the continued selection have increased the variability of fruit shape and colour. Hierarchical clustering based on conventional and fruit morphological descriptors reflected the separation of species on the basis of their phylogenetic relationships. These observations suggested that the flow between distinct gene pools could have contributed to determine the similarity of the species on the basis of morphological plant and fruit parameters. The approach used represents the first high-throughput phenotyping effort in Capsicum spp. aimed at broadening the knowledge of the diversity of domesticated and wild peppers. The data could help to select best the candidates for breeding and provide new insight into the understanding of the genetic base of the fruit shape of pepper. View Full-Text
Keywords: Capsicum; wild species; high-throughput phenotyping; plant descriptors; Tomato Analyzer; germplasm diversity Capsicum; wild species; high-throughput phenotyping; plant descriptors; Tomato Analyzer; germplasm diversity
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Tripodi, P.; Greco, B. Large Scale Phenotyping Provides Insight into the Diversity of Vegetative and Reproductive Organs in a Wide Collection of Wild and Domesticated Peppers (Capsicum spp.). Plants 2018, 7, 103.

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