Determination of Nuclear Dna Content in Orchids by Flow Cytometry

Jones, Wendy E.
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Flow cytometric analysis was found useful for determining ploidy and DNA content values for orchid species and hybrids. Immature leaf tissue yielded the most reliable results for all orchids sampled. Leaf endopolyploidy was common, with levels as high as 16N found in mature D. gouldii leaves. DNA content values for 37 Dendrobium species, 11 Dendrobium hybrids, 33 additional orchid species and 8 hybrids were determined. Values for Dendrobium species ranged from 1.53 pg to 4.23 pg/2C nuclei. C-values for the remaining orchid species ranged from 1.91 pg to 15.19 pg/2C nuclei, with those of Cattleya alone ranging from 3.29 pg to 9.29 pg/2C nuclei. The highest variation within Cattleya corresponded to different specimens of the same species, suggesting polyploidy. An analysis of Dendrobium hybrids and parent species showed that DNA content values could be reliably predicted in cases where parentage was indefinite.
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