Karyotype and genome size comparative analyses among six species of the oilseed-bearing genus Jatropha (Euphorbiaceae)

Abstract Jatropha is an important genus of Euphorbiaceae, with species largely used for various purposes, including the manufacturing of soaps and pharmaceutical products and applications in the bioenergetic industry. Although there have been several studies focusing J. curcas in various aspects, the karyotype features of Jatropha species are poorly known. Therefore, we analyzed six Jatropha species through fluorochrome staining (CMA/DAPI), fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) with 5S and 45S rDNA probes and genome size estimation by flow cytometry. Our results revealed several chromosome markers by both CMA/DAPI and FISH for the analyzed species. Five Jatropha species (J. curcas, J. gossypiifolia, J. integerrima, J. multifida and J. podagrica) showed four CMA-positive (CMA+) bands associated with the 5S and 45S rDNA sites (one and two pairs, respectively). However, J. mollissima displayed six CMA+/DAPI- bands co-localized with both 5S and 45S rDNA, which showed a FISH superposition. A gradual variation in the genome sizes was observed (2C = 0.64 to 0.86 pg), although an association between evidenced heterochromatin and genome sizes was not found among species. Except for the unique banding pattern of J. mollissima and the pericentromeric heterochromatin of J. curcas and J. podagrica, our data evidenced relatively conserved karyotypes.