Sex-linked AFLP markers indicate a pseusoautosomal region in hemp (Cannabis sativa L.)
In dioecious plants of hemp (Cannabis sativa L.), males are regarded as heterogametic XY and females as homogametic XX, although it is difficult to discriminate the X cytologically from the Y. The Y chromosome is somewhat larger than the X. Our aim was to analyse AFLP markers on X and Y, and to use them to gain some insight into the structure of the sex chromosomes. Markers located on the sex chromosomes can be grouped into different classes, depending on the presence or absence of a fragment on the X and/or the Y. They are detected by separately analysing male and female progenies of a single cross. Five markers were found to be located on both chromosomes. A few recombinants were observed for marker pairs of this class in the male progenies. Two completely linked markers located on the Y chromosome in the male parent show a recombination rate of r = 0.25 with sex. Recombination must have occurred between the sex chromosomes in the male parent. The recombination analysis led to the conclusion that there is a pseudoautosomal region (PAR) on the sex chromosomes, allowing recombination between the X and the Y chromosome. The other regions of the sex chromosomes show only a few recombination events, for the Y as well as for the X. These results are discussed in comparison to other dioecious plants.