Lindsay, D. L., X. Guan, N. E. Harms, J. T. Cronin, L. A. Meyerson and R. F. Lance. In review. DNA markers for the in-field genetic discrimination of three Phragmites australis (Poaceae: Arundinoideae) subspecies. For Applications in Plant Sciences.


Premise of the study: To genetically discriminate morphologically similar subspecies of the common reed, we developed qPCR markers for Phragmites australis americana, P. a. australis, and P. a. berlandieri.

Methods and Results: Utilizing chloroplast DNA sequence data from Illumina MiSeq sequencing, we identified four novel qPCR markers in P. australis capable of discriminating among three subspecies. The markers were tested on 10-20 individuals of each Phragmites subspecies and against four individuals of Arundo donax and Phalaris arundinacea. One marker amplifies the native (P. a. americana) subspecies only. One marker amplifies only the invasive subspecies (P. a. australis and P. a. berlandieri). Two markers amplify both the native P. a. americanus and the invasive P. a. australis, but not P. a. berlandieri.

Conclusions: Our results demonstrate the applicability of these qPCR markers for the genetic discrimination of Phragmites australis subspecies in the United States.