Plant Diversity ›› 2022, Vol. 40 ›› Issue (01): 70-82.DOI: 10.1016/j.pld.2021.05.004

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Comparative chloroplast genome analysis of medicinally important Veratrum (Melanthiaceae) in China: Insights into genomic characterization and phylogenetic relationships

Ying-Min Zhanga, Li-Jun Hana, Cong-Wei Yanga, Zi-Li Yinb, Xing Tiana, Zi-Gang Qiana,b, Guo-Dong Lia,b   

  1. a Faculty of Traditional Chinese Pharmacy, Yunnan University of Chinese Medicine, Kunming 650500, Yunnan, China;
    b Yunnan Key Laboratory for Dai and Yi Medicines, Yunnan University of Chinese Medicine, Kunming 650500, Yunnan, China
  • Received:2021-01-07 Revised:2021-05-19 Online:2022-02-25 Published:2022-03-12
  • Contact: Zi-Gang Qian, Guo-Dong Li
  • Supported by:
    We are very grateful to Dr. Yong-Hong Zhang of Yunnan Normal University for his comments and technical supports. We thank Dr. Shiou Yih Lee of Sun Yat-sen University for ideas and assistance provided during manuscript preparation. This work was funded by the High-end talent of Yunnan province ‘Youth Top-notch Talent Support Program’ the Reserve Talent for Academic and Young Technical Leaders of Yunnan Province Special Subsidies for Public Health services of "Fourth Chinese Materia Medica Resources Survey" (DSS, MOF. 43/2018).

Abstract: Members of Veratrum are perennial herbs widely used in traditional Chinese medicine to induce vomiting, resolve blood stasis and relieve pain. However, the intrageneric classification and phylogenetic relationships within Veratrum have long been controversial due to the complexity of morphological variations and lack of high-resolution molecular markers. In this study, we reevaluated the infrageneric relationships with the genus Veratrum using complete chloroplast genome sequence data. Herein, the complete cp genomes of ten species of Veratrum were newly sequenced and characterized. The complete cp genomes of ten species of Veratrum had the typical quadripartite structure, ranging from 151,597 bp to 153,711 bp in size and comprising a total of 135 genes. The structure of Veratrum cp genomes (i.e., gene order, content, and genome components) was highly similar across species. The number of simple sequence repeats (SSRs) ranged from 63 to 78, and of long repeats ranged from 31 to 35. Eight highly divergent regions (ndhF, psbC-psbZ, psbK-psbI, rpoB-trnC_GCA, trnK_UUU-trnQ_UUG, trnS_GCU-trnG_UCC, trnT_UGU-trnL_UAA and ycf1) were identified and are potentially useful for the DNA barcoding of Veratrum. Phylogenetic analysis among 29 taxa based on cp genomes, total genes, protein-coding genes and intergenic regions strongly supported the monophyly of Veratrum. The circumscription and relationships of the infrageneric taxa of Veratrum were well-presented with great resolution. These results will facilitate the identification, taxonomy, and utilization of Veratrum plants as well as the evolutionary studies of Melanthiaceae.

Key words: Veratrum, Melanthiaceae, Chloroplast genome, Comparative analysis, Phylogeny