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Variability of pollen grains in clones of Dioscorea cayenensis – D. rotundata complex grown in centre of Benin

Elie Idossou Assaba, Mounirou Yolou, Narcisse Denadi, Ida Sessi Anizehou, Jeanne Zoundjihekpon

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Int. J. Biosci.16(2), 323-331, February 2020

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12692/ijb/16.2.323-331


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The classical genetic breeding improvement of the species is through gene flows, based on pollen grains flow between individuals. The aim of this study is to evaluate the pollen variation between some clones of the complex Dioscorea cayenensis – D. rotundata of three villages of Centre of Benin. Unopened and mature male flowers were dissected and the anthers stained with acetic carmine. The preparations were observed with an optical microscope. Data on the shape, length, width of pollen were collected and subjected to descriptive analyse and pollen surface to an analysis of variance. Two forms of pollen grains were observed; the ovals shape percentage vary from 38 to 88.23%, and that of the rounds shape vary from 11.77 to 70%. The major axis has an average length of 0.49 ± 0.16 μm and that of the minor 0.32 ± 0.14 μm for oval shapes; the average diameter of round pollen was 0.36 ± 0.09 μm. These data are statistically very different (P<0.0001). The pollen grains of Dioscorea cayenensis – D. rotundata complex are oval or round shapes. Both shapes are present in all cultivars and the dominance of one shape of pollen grains is under genetic program. Size of the pollen grains is conserved within the species. These results are important for the classical genetic improvement of this vegetative species, where pollen grains would be the vehicles of interesting traits between cultivars identified in farmer’s fields.


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Variability of pollen grains in clones of Dioscorea cayenensis – D. rotundata complex grown in centre of Benin

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