It has been postulated that the fungus Ustilago maydis followed its host maize around the world. In order to understand the biogeography of this fungus relative to its host, we used a bioinformatics approach to develop 86 tandem repeat markers useful for population studies of U. maydis. We characterized repeat motifs between two and 155 nucleotides using 36 isolates from USA, Mexico and South America. Our data suggested that (i) repeat motif length does not predict the number of alleles for that locus, and (ii) that the more polymorphic markers can resolve differences in a small geographical area.
- Tandem repeat markers
- Ustilago maydis