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Bread wheat's large and complex genome is revealed
Date:11/28/2012

and related research, reveals that the bread wheat genome has undergone rapid and significant changes, including loss of gene family members during the time it was being domesticated. This is when bread wheat moved from having two sets of chromosomes to multiples of that number -- ultimately, the 6 sets seen today. This chromosomal multiplication is deemed desirable, as selecting for them is a way to overcome the sterility that occurs when breeding hybrid crops.

The investigators also found many expanded gene families within the bread wheat genome. The majority of these are associated with crop productivity and include ones involved in defense, nutritional content, energy harvesting, metabolism, and growth.

Current breeding practices and knowledge have been exploited to the point that yield increases have slowed. The sequencing and analysis in this study provides a framework with which this crop can now be improved.

"While we and our collaborators continue to work to enhance the resolution of our knowledge of the wheat genome, these results should have an significant impact on breeding efforts and further research studies of the wheat genomes and its those of its wild relatives," said McCombie, summing up the project's technical and biological impact.


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Contact: Edward Brydon Ph.D.
ebrydon@cshl.edu
516-367-6822
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

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