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Biotech Science

Pine Tree Has Largest Genome Ever Sequenced 71

Posted by samzenpus
from the it's-how-you-use-it dept.
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "Using a single pollinated pine seed, researchers have sequenced the entire genome of the loblolly pine tree--and it's a doozy. The tree's genome is largest yet sequenced: 22.18 billion base pairs, more than seven times longer than the human genome. The team found that 82% of the genome was made up of duplicated segments, compared with just 25% in humans. The researchers also identified genes responsible for important traits such as disease resistance, wood formation, and stress response."
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Pine Tree Has Largest Genome Ever Sequenced

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  • Re:A Cure At Last (Score:5, Informative)

    by Samantha Wright (1324923) on Friday March 21, 2014 @01:02AM (#46540845) Homepage Journal
    Inadvisable—much of wood itself (not the bark, the structural stuff underneath) is dead at functional maturity. Trees are just skin and bones! (And plumbing. And really crazy hair. And roots. And sometimes genitals.)
  • Re:I call BS (Score:4, Informative)

    by Samantha Wright (1324923) on Friday March 21, 2014 @01:34AM (#46540937) Homepage Journal
    63x total coverage with from Illumina hardware using a mixture of paired-end libraries, ranging from 200 bp to a whopping 40 Kbp. I'm pretty sure that's sufficient information to estimate the number of large-scale repetitions. Sequencing projects of species for which there is no good relative to scaffold against are typically much more rigorous than what you'd see in cancer research.
  • by Animats (122034) on Friday March 21, 2014 @01:40AM (#46540959) Homepage

    That's the largest genome that's been fully sequenced, not the largest genome known. See Comparison of different genome sizes. [] Genome sizes for plants vary over a huge range, and aren't closely related to organism complexity. The largest genome known is for an amoeboid.

  • by Calavar (1587721) on Friday March 21, 2014 @02:28AM (#46541107)
    Why is this modded up? First it is wrong even on the surface. Chordates (the phylum containing humans) first appeared around 550 million years ago. Conifers (the division -- plant equivalent of phylum -- containing pines) first appeared around 300 million years ago. Second, even trees and humans are descended from a single common ancestor, so how can trees be "evolutionarily" older than humans? Third, more time does not equal bigger genome. Genomes can shrink over time. This has happened in many species of yeast and bacteria, as smaller genomes allow them to replicate faster. Even macroscopic organisms such as birds have had their genomes shrink over time.

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