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Review on Coffee (Coffea arabica L.) Genetic Diversity Studies Using Molecular Markers

Coffee (Coffea arabica L.) is one of the most consumed beverages in the world and is the second largest traded commodity after petroleum. It greatly contributes to the economy of many developing countries in South and Central America, Asia, and Africa. Currently, many countries are producing and supplying coffee to the world market and there is a high competition among producers to meet the demand both in quantity and quality. Hence, it is vital to improve the current productivity as well as the quality of coffee for each producing country. In this regard, variability study is a pre-requisite for improvement of any crop and knowledge of the genetic variability among genotypes is important for the transfer of useful genes and to maximize the use of available germplasm resources. Hence, genetic diversity analysis in coffee (Coffea arabica L.) has paramount importance in continuously developing coffee varieties through hybridization and selection. Morphological markers allow the assessment of genetic variability based on individual phenotypic differences yet there are limitations associated with these markers. These limitations led to the development of molecular markers. Molecular marker techniques are based on naturally occurring polymorphisms in DNA sequences. Studies, which have been conducted to assess the level of genetic diversity of Coffee arabica L. using different DNA markers (RAPD, AFLP, ISSR, and SSR), demonstrated that all DNA marker techniques could be applied for measuring the degree of variability within, and between wild and cultivated coffee populations. Despite all the four DNA markers are efficient in coffee genetic diversity analysis, all have their own disadvantages. However, the previous studies showed that the polymorphism observed in coffee Arabica is generally low as compared to other diploid coffee species and this is probably the result of a narrow genetic basis of the cultivated coffee (Coffea arabica L.) as well as the mating system of the crop. Hence, it is recommended to use the observed variability for the coffee breeding program to improve the yield and quality of coffee.

Coffea Arabica, Molecular Markers, Polymorphisim, Simple Sequence Repeat Markers, Variability

Getachew Weldemichael. (2023). Review on Coffee (Coffea arabica L.) Genetic Diversity Studies Using Molecular Markers. Journal of Plant Sciences, 11(5), 164-170.

Copyright © 2023 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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