In the past few decades, many investigations in the field of plant biology have employed selectively neutral, multilocus, dominant markers such as inter-simple sequence repeat (ISSR), random-amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD), and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) to address hypotheses at lower taxonomic levels. More recently, sequence-related amplified polymorphism (SRAP) markers have been developed, which are used to amplify coding regions of DNA with primers targeting open reading frames. These markers have proven to be robust and highly variable, on par with AFLP, and are attained through a significantly less technically demanding process. SRAP markers have been used primarily for agronomic and horticultural purposes, developing quantitative trait loci in advanced hybrids and assessing genetic diversity of large germplasm collections. Here, we suggest that SRAP markers should be employed for research addressing hypotheses in plant systematics, biogeography, conservation, ecology, and beyond. We provide an overview of the SRAP literature to date, review descriptive statistics of SRAP markers in a subset of 171 publications, and present relevant case studies to demonstrate the applicability of SRAP markers to the diverse field of plant biology. Results of these selected works indicate that SRAP markers have the potential to enhance the current suite of molecular tools in a diversity of fields by providing an easy-to-use. highly variable marker with inherent biological significance.
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Vol. 2 • No. 7