Genetics

Loblolly takes genome size prize

Journal name:
Nature
Volume:
507,
Page:
402
Date published:
DOI:
doi:10.1038/507402a
Published online

A species of pine tree native to the southeastern United States has a genome with 23 billion base pairs, more than 7 times the length of the human genome.

FEV Images/Alamy

Kristian Stevens at the University of California in Davis and his team sequenced and assembled the genome of the loblolly pine (Pinus taeda; pictured), mainly using the tissue from a single pine seed.

Another team, made up of many of the same researchers and led by Jill Wegrzyn at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, characterized around 50,000 of the genes and estimated that 82% of the loblolly genome is made from repetitive elements. This work, the first pine genome assembled so far, provides a foundation to study the biology of conifers, the authors say.

Genetics 196, 875–890; 891–909 (2014)

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