Genetics and Molecular Biology
Print version ISSN 1415-4757
NASSAR, Nagib M.A.. Cytogenetics and evolution of cassava (Manihot esculenta Crantz). Genet. Mol. Biol. [online]. 2000, vol.23, n.4, pp. 1003-1014. ISSN 1415-4757. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1415-47572000000400046.
All Manihot species so far examined, including cassava (Manihot esculenta), have 2n = 36. Interspecific hybrids between cassava and its wild relatives show fair regular meiosis, and backcrossed generations exhibit high fertility. Electrophoresis shows affinity between species of different sections, as well as between some of them and cassava itself. Polyploidy has apparently contributed to the rapid speciation of this genus, while apomixis has offered a means of perpetuating new hybrid types adapted to different environments. It is assumed that cassava originated by hybridization between two wild Manihot species followed by vegetative reproduction of the hybrid.