Navigation Links
WCMC-Q researchers unlock genetic secrets of date palm
Date:9/15/2009

Doha, Sept. 15, 2009 Researchers at Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar have mapped a draft version of the date palm genome, unlocking many of its genetic secrets.

"We have generated a draft DNA sequence and initial assembly of the date palm using the most advanced technology," says Joel Malek, director of the Genomics Laboratory at WCMC-Q. Genetic information about the date palm is extremely valuable to researchers who are working to improve fruit yield and quality and to better understand susceptibility and resistance to disease.

"This is an important step for our biomedical research program," says Khaled Machaca, Ph.D., professor of physiology and biophysics and associate dean for basic science research. "It clearly demonstrates the feasibility and success of the most advanced genomics technologies in Qatar and represents a milestone towards establishing Qatar and Weill Cornell as a regional research center of excellence. In addition, this achievement by the WCMC-Q research team holds great promise for the application of the genomics technology to a better understanding of biomedical problems."

The date palm sequencing work was a proof of concept study, according to Malek, who established the genomics laboratory last year. The goal was to establish and validate the capabilities of the core lab for large-scale genomics projects. The lab is an integral part of a large biomedical research program launched last year by WCMC-Q with support from the Qatar Foundation that aims to make Qatar a hub for research in the Middle East.

To produce the draft map, the WCMC-Q researchers used a next generation sequencing approach, which Malek says offers data quality between that of the expressed sequence tag (EST) method and the traditional whole-genome mapping method. "We were able to develop a relatively unbiased view of the gene space of the entire date palm plant at a fraction of the cost and in a much shorter period of time. Using this approach, which takes advantage of the lower repetitive DNA in the date palm gene regions, we have increased the publicly available knowledge of the date palm gene by about 1000 fold."

Malek and his research assistants obtained the DNA from leaves of the date palm provided by the Qatar Plant Tissue Culture Lab in the Department of Agriculture and Water Research (Qatar Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Agriculture).

Date palm trees play a significant role in agriculture throughout the Middle East, Northern Africa and Pakistan. The fruit is a major source of nutrition in those areas, and the tree itself plays an important role in the development of sustainable agriculture in many drought and saline-affected regions of the world. References in the Qur'an have kept alive the use of dates for medicinal purposes over the centuries.

Malek says he and his colleagues will continue to improve the draft sequence and publish their data. Meanwhile, they are making the information available to scientists and researchers around the world.


'/>"/>

Contact: Noura Zreik
noura.zreik@hillandknowlton.com
Weill Cornell Medical College--Qatar
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Weeding out marijuana: Researchers close in on engineering recognizable, drug-free Cannabis plant
2. Dartmouth researchers get personal with genetics
3. Ecosystem researchers to hold science briefing for policymakers
4. UAB researchers looking for genetic predictors for suicide
5. Rice researchers seek better vaccine procedure
6. Researchers find first evidence of virus in malignant prostate cells
7. Diabetes advance: Researchers find gene that causes resistance to insulin
8. Researchers find 2 more genetic risk factors for Alzheimers disease
9. Researchers restore missing protein in rare genetic brain disorder
10. Mayo Clinic researchers find that protein believed to protect against cancer has a Mr. Hyde side
11. Species diversity helps ASU researchers refine analyses of human gene mutations
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016 Market Research Future published a ... The global Mobile Biometric Security and Service Market is expected to ... 2022. Market Highlights: ... , Mobile Biometric Security ... to the increasing need of authentication and security from unwanted cyber ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016  Singulex, Inc., the leader ... technology, entered into a license and supply agreement with ... The agreement provides Singulex access to Thermo Scientific BRAHMS ... is used to diagnose systemic bacterial infection ... to aid in assessing the risk of ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... India , December 7, 2016 According to a ... Machine Learning), Software Tool (Facial Expression, Voice Recognition), Service, Application Area, End User, ... is estimated to grow from USD 6.72 Billion in 2016 to USD 36.07 ... Continue Reading ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016 This report analyzes the ... Segments: Acid Based (Humic, Amino, & Fulvic), Extract Based, and ... following Crop Types: Ornamental & Turf, Row Crops, and Others. ... Canada , Japan , ... Latin America , and Rest of World. Annual ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... -- AskLinkerReports.com has published a report on Amyloglucosidase ... 2016 Market Research Report. From a basic outline of the ... all covered in the report. This report projects investment feasibility ... the Amyloglucosidase industry. ... , Complete report ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... control cells — optogenetics — is key to exciting advances in the study ... spatially patterned light projected via free-space optics stimulates small, transparent organisms and excites ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... -- Anaconda BioMed S.L., a pre-clinical stage medical device company ... system for the treatment of Acute Ischemic Stroke (AIS), ... join its Scientific Advisory Board (SAB). The SAB is ... and clinical experts to Anaconda BioMed S.L., as the ... to its clinical phase. The SAB is also ...
Breaking Biology Technology: