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Sequencing, annotation and comparative analysis of nine BACs of giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca)
Date:3/10/2010

BGI has carried out deep sequence exploration on nine BACs of giant panda with traditional sanger sequencing methods. Sequences and structure information of new genes and repeats were predicted, which greatly fills the gaps of genomics study on giant panda. In addition, the nine sequences assembled based on traditional phrap methods provided as a validation resource for the de novo assembly accuracy of the whole genome shotgun sequencing reads of giant panda generated by the Illumina GA sequencing technology. This study is reported in Volumn 53 (Januray, 2010) of SCIENCE CHINA Life Sciences because of its significant research value.

Giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca), known as the "Chinese treasure", is one of the most endangered species in the world. A survey revealed that only about 2500~3000 individuals remain in the wild. Its dietary specialization, habitat isolation, and reproductive constraints have led to a perception that this is a species at an "evolutionary dead end". In recent years, strenuous efforts have been made to study and protect this animal. Considerable knowledge of its physiology, biochemistry, genetic diversity and ecology has been gathered.

MHC II genomic region and mitochondrial sequence of giant panda were sequenced and annotated. Phylogenic tree was generated with mitochondrial sequences of giant panda and other bear speices, suggesting that giant panda belongs to the species of Usrides. Genome diversities of giant panda were also explored, suggesting that giant panda is not a species at an evolutionary "dead end". Conservation strategies should focus on the restoration and protection of wild habitat and the maintenance of the substantial regional genetic diversity.

In this work, we sequenced and assembled nine BACs of giant panda, about a genomic region of 878 kb, which greatly fills the gaps of genomic study on giant panda. Twelve protein coding genes were predicted, seven of which could be functionally
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Contact: Y. Zheng
zhengyang@genomics.org.cn
86-755-252-74032
Science in China Press
Source:Eurekalert

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