Genetic Diversity Analysis Among Cowpea [vigna Unguiculata (l.) Walp] Accessions From Sub-saharan Africa Using Simple Sequence Repeats (ssr's).
Magembe, Eric M.
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Cowpea is one of the most important legumes in the world. It is the second most important pulse crop in tropical Africa after common beans (Phaseolus vulgaris). Cowpea is valued for the high protein content of its grains which is about 25%. In Africa, where animal protein is not always freely available/ affordable, cowpea provides a valuable source of proteins. Cowpea diversity and relatedness in Africa is poorly understood. This lack of knowledge and information inhibits the use of novel germplasm and novel alleles in breeding programs and results in potential crop improvement bottlenecks. A core set of 1430 accessions of cowpea landraces from Sub-Saharan Africa were identified from the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture's (IITA) global cowpea collection (15003 accessions). In this study sixteen SSR markers were used to evaluate the genetic diversity cowpea landraces in Sub-Saharan Africa.