Biodiv Sci ›› 2011, Vol. 19 ›› Issue (3): 319-326.DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1003.2011.08206

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Priorities for genetic resource collection and preservation of wild gymnosperms in Yunnan: an analysis based on the “3E” principle

Tiancai Huang1,2,3, Chunlin Long1,2,*()   

  1. 1 College of Life and Environmental Sciences, Minzu University of China, Beijing 100081
    2 Kunming Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Kunming 650204
    3 College of Conservation Biology, Southwest Forestry University, Kunming 650224
  • Received:2010-08-25 Accepted:2011-02-23 Online:2011-05-20 Published:2013-12-10
  • Contact: Chunlin Long


The “3E” principle has been used to determine priorities for preservation of genetic resources in conservation and research projects. The three “E”s refer to Endangered, Endemic, and Economic. Here, we applied this principle to explore wild gymnosperm genetic resources (or germplasm resources) at the species (varieties) level occurring in Yunnan, and to determine their priority for preservation, research and management. There are 107 species and varieties of gymnosperms in Yunnan belonging to 10 families and 29 genera. Among them, 72 species were attributed to “3E” genetic resources. According to the “3E” principle, 9 species were defined as “highest priority” and should be urgently collected and preserved, i.e. Cephalotaxus lanceolata, Cycas revoluta, Podocarpus forrestii, Cycas debaoensis, Juniperus baimashanensis, Pinus squamata, Cycas hongheensis, Juniperus chengii, and Pinus wangii. Forty species were classified as “priority” for collection and preservation, e.g. Abies ferreana, Picea brachytyla, Abies nukiangensis, Cycas tonkinensis, etc. There are a multitude of in situ and ex situ conservation and cultivation methods that can help to conserve these genetic resources. Finally, we discussed the contents and merits of the “3E” principle, and concluded that the principle is a scientific and rational way in which to evaluate the genetic resources contained within this group of gymnosperms. The principle can be adopted in efforts for the collection, conservation and sustainable use of genetic resources.

Key words: 3E principle, genetic resources preservation, priority taxa, gymnosperm