Chloroplast DNA: A Promising Source of Information for Plant Phylogeny and Traceability
Chloroplasts are organelles with a specific DNA (cpDNA), which are responsible by the energetic metabolism in eukaryotic cells from plants and algae. Their key role is to perform the photosynthesis, when the cell converts sunlight and carbon dioxide into glucoses (=energy) and oxygen. Studies aiming to understand how chloroplast works are important to highlight details about plant evolution. The new approaches in molecular biology have raised the knowledge about the chloroplast genome characteristics and opened a wide range of possible applications for the increased background. In this review, we discuss the use of chloroplast DNA for plant phylogeny and traceability. Considering the increasing need for food safety, identification of gene flow from genetically modified plants and for better tools to police investigation, many works have demonstrated the viability of using cpDNA for this purposes, either for phylogeny of land plants or traceability of food, genetically modified plants and illicit drugs.