The conservation status of Euchresta japonica Hook. f. ex Regel in Korea was investigated, with an emphasis on its genetic diversity. From field surveys, we obtained the only locality record for a wild population in Korea, which contained eight individuals. Genotyping was performed using nine microsatellite markers for all 20 remaining individuals, including those in ex situ collections. Among nine microsatellite loci that amplified within this group, five showed polymorphism with low hererozygosities, and a total of 12 multilocus genotypes were detected. Wild-specific alleles were detected in two individuals, and ex situ-specific alleles were detected in six individuals. Five individuals proved to have individual-specific alleles. The Korean population was also distinguished from the previously reported Japanese population by different alleles and higher diversity. To conserve this species more effectively in Korea, we recommend the following: (1) fencing the remaining wild population; (2) no relocation of wild individuals, as nine ex situ plants are already available; (3) complete ex situ conservation of all genetic diversity via clonal propagation of wild individuals; and (4) continuous protection and monitoring of the wild population.
- Endangered species
- Genetic diversity