Data from: Genomic and phenotypic evidence for an incomplete domestication of South American grain amaranth (Amaranthus caudatus)
Stetter, Markus G.; Mueller, Thomas; Schmid, Karl J. (2016), Data from: Genomic and phenotypic evidence for an incomplete domestication of South American grain amaranth (Amaranthus caudatus), Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.m5kk3
The domestication syndrome comprises phenotypic changes that differentiate crops from their wild ancestors. We compared the genomic variation and phenotypic differentiation of the two putative domestication traits seed size and seed colour of the grain amaranth Amaranthus caudatus, which is an ancient crop of South America, and its two close wild relatives and putative ancestors A. hybridus and A. quitensis. Genotyping 119 accessions of the three species from the Andean region using genotyping by sequencing (GBS) resulted in 9485 SNPs that revealed a strong genetic differentiation of cultivated A. caudatus from its two relatives. A. quitensis and A. hybridus accessions did not cluster by their species assignment but formed mixed groups according to their geographic origin in Ecuador and Peru, respectively. A. caudatus had a higher genetic diversity than its close relatives and shared a high proportion of polymorphisms with their wild relatives consistent with the absence of a strong bottleneck or a high level of recent gene flow. Genome sizes and seed sizes were not significantly different between A. caudatus and its relatives, although a genetically distinct group of A. caudatus from Bolivia had significantly larger seeds. We conclude that despite a long history of human cultivation and selection for white grain colour, A. caudatus shows a weak genomic and phenotypic domestication syndrome and proposes that it is an incompletely domesticated crop species either because of weak selection or high levels of gene flow from its sympatric close undomesticated relatives that counteracted the fixation of key domestication traits.