First Draft of Oil Palm Genome Completed

Synthetic Genomics Inc. and Asiatic Centre for Genome Technology (ACGT) announced that they have completed the first draft assembly and annotation of the oil palm genome. They have also made progress in sequencing and analyzing the jatropha genome. Synthetic Genomics is a California-based company dedicated to developing and commercializing genomic-driven solutions to address global energy and environmental challenges, while ACGT is a wholly owned subsidiary of Asiatic Development Berhad, an oil palm plantation company in Malaysia. Once the sequencing and analysis of the oil palm genome is completed, this will become the reference genome.

Both companies are also conducting an in-depth genomic, physiological and biochemical analysis of jatropha, a robust oil seed crop whose oil is suitable for conversion into cleaner, renewable fuels. Jatropha is an attractive biofuels source as it readily grows on marginal lands and is not used for food.

Visit http://www.syntheticgenomics.com/press/2008-05-21.htm for details of the press release.

This article is part of the Crop Biotech Update, a weekly summary of world developments in agri-biotech for developing countries, produced by the Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, International Service for the Aquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications SEAsiaCenter (ISAAA)

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