Lupines (Lupinus spp.) are a common plant legume species found on western U.S. rangelands. Lupinus spp. may contain quinolizidine and/or piperidine alkaloids that can be toxic and/or teratogenic to grazing livestock. Alkaloid profiles may vary between and within a species. The objectives of this study were to (1) further explore the characteristic alkaloid profiles of Lupinus sulphureus using field collections and (2) explore the phylogenetic relationship of the different populations and chemotypes of L. sulphureus using the amplified fragment length polymorphism method of DNA fingerprinting, thus providing possible explanations to the phenomena of multiple chemotypes within a species. A total of 49 accessions of L. sulphureus were classified into seven chemotypes. The DNA profiles showed that one L. sulphureus chemotype, chemotype A, is genetically divergent from the other chemotypes of L. sulphureus, suggesting that it represents an unresolved lupine taxon, possibly a new lupine species. Additionally, the different chemotypes of L. sulphureus represented different genetic groups, as shown by Bayesian cluster analysis and principle component analysis.
Keywords: Lupinus sulphureus; alkaloid; genetic diversity; lupine.