Systematics/Phytogeography / Taxonomie/ Section
Korpelainen, Helena , Pietilšinen, Maria .
Improving taxon identification with DNA barcodes: a case study on Salix .
It has been shown that biological species can be identified using a short DNA sequence from a standardized position in the genome - a DNA barcode. Our main focus is to provide DNA barcodes as a new taxonomical key for plant taxa occurring in Finland. There are many areas of practical importance, especially those related to knowledge of biodiversity, verification of herbal medicines, foodstuffs or controlled species, monitoring of harmful or invasive species and ecological surveys. Additionally, DNA barcoding contributes to phylogenetic knowledge and is effective in resolving the taxonomy of poorly known groups.
In our project, we are generating barcoding information of the matK gene and the trnH-psbA spacer, which both represent the chloroplast genome. We have developed new primer pairs, which work across a wide range of plant taxa. We are testing, whether these two barcoding regions provide enough taxonomic resolution or whether additional genomic regions should be included. Additionally, we are exploring how to solve taxonomic questions in difficult plant groups. A case study concerns the genus Salix. The species of this genus are very cross-fertile and numerous hybrids occur. Thus, the accurate identification of Salix is not always easy to accomplish. Finally, we will introduce a combined barcode database and e-learning project aiming to provide state-of-the-art learning techniques and means for the identification of plants and fungi.
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1 - University of Helsinki, Department of Applied Biology, P.O. Box 27, Helsinki, FI-00014, Finland
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Location: Room 1/Woodward
Date: Monday, July 28th, 2008
Time: 1:15 PM