Brassica rapa domestication: untangling wild and feral forms and convergence of crop morphotypes.
The study of domestication contributes to our knowledge of evolution and crop genetic resources. Human selection has shaped wild Brassica rapa into diverse turnip, leafy, and oilseed crops. Despite its worldwide economic importance and potential as a model for understanding diversification under domestication, insights into the number of domestication events and initial crop(s) domesticated in B. rapa have been limited due to a lack of clarity about the wild or feral status of conspecific noncrop relatives. To address this gap and reconstruct the domestication history of B. rapa, we analyzed 68,468 genotyping-by-sequencing-derived single nucleotide polymorphisms for 416 samples in the largest diversity panel of domesticated and weedy B. rapa to date. To further understand the center of origin, we modeled the potential range of wild B. rapa during the mid-Holocene. Our analyses of genetic diversity across B. rapa morphotypes suggest that noncrop samples from the Caucasus, Siberia, and Italy may be truly wild, whereas those occurring in the Americas and much of Europe are feral. Clustering, tree-based analyses, and parameterized demographic inference further indicate that turnips were likely the first crop type domesticated, from which leafy types in East Asia and Europe were selected from distinct lineages. These findings clarify the domestication history and nature of wild crop genetic resources for B. rapa, which provides the first step toward investigating cases of possible parallel selection, the domestication and feralization syndrome, and novel germplasm for Brassica crop improvement.