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Abstract Detail

Conservation Biology

Walsh, Seana [1], Fant, Jeremie [2], Kramer, Andrea [3], Cheng, Kevin [3], Morden, Clifford [4], Lorence, David [1].

Investigating ex situ genetic diversity of a functionally extinct Hawaiian species, Brighamia insignis A. Gray (Campanulaceae), to inform future conservation actions.

Brighamia insignis A. Gray, a lobeliad endemic to the island of Kaua‘i and historically to Ni‘ihau, is one of 358 federally listed endangered plant species in Hawai‘i. Only a single individual remains in the wild. For this and other extinct or nearly-extinct species, the only hope for survival comes from ex situ collections, which may be able to support eventual in situ conservation efforts. The National Tropical Botanical Garden (NTBG), and other institutions around the world, maintain cultivated accessions of this species in their living collections. NTBG maintains the largest ex situ collection of B. insignis and it is on the island upon which a restoration project would take place. The purpose of this study was to examine genetic diversity maintained within and among as many B. insignis ex situ collections as possible, to see if some collections maintain diversity underrepresented in the NTBG collection. Ninety individuals representing 48 accessions from 24 total ex situ collections in seven countries were included in this study. ISSR markers were used to assess genetic diversity. Our results indicate 1) there is a high level of variation among the collections, and 2) variation among NTBG accessions do not reflect the extent of this variation. Genetic diversity underrepresented in the sampled NTBG plants is maintained in collections at three botanic gardens: Botanischer Garten Copenhagen, Chicago Botanic Garden, and Missouri Botanical Garden. It is recommended that NTBG obtain seeds from plants held in these three collections to then grow and use as pollen donors in crosses with NTBG accessions. By pooling resources, collaboration among institutions can lead to more efficient and effective ex situ conservation action.

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1 - National Tropical Botanical Garden, Science and Conservation, 3530 Papalina Road, Kalaheo, HI, 96741, USA
2 - Chicago Botanic Gardens, 1000 Lake Cook Rd, Glencoe, IL, 60022, USA
3 - Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, IL, 60022, USA
4 - University Of Hawaii, Department Of Botany, 3190 Maile Way, Honolulu, HI, 96822-2279, USA

Brighamia insignis
botanic garden
conservation genetics
ex situ conservation
genetic diversity

Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Topics
Session: 66
Location: Salon 19/20/The Shaw Conference Centre
Date: Wednesday, July 29th, 2015
Time: 1:30 PM
Number: 66001
Abstract ID:950
Candidate for Awards:None

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