Biotech Updates

Scientists Map Tobacco Genome

June 27, 2008

Researchers from the North Carolina State University (NCSU) have completed the nearly five-year, $17.6 million effort to map the tobacco genome. The team determined the complete nucleotide sequence of the gene space of the crop, the part of the tobacco genome that contains genes as well as elements that control gene expression.  Although the tobacco genome contains approximately 4.5 billion bases, which is 1.5 times the size of the human genome; only 20 to 25 percent of a tobacco plant's genome is considered gene space.

The genetic information will be available online through the National Institutes of Health National Center for Biotechnology Information GenBank Web site ( Tobacco’s genetic blueprint will be important since the crop is widely used as a model in a wide range of plant studies, particularly in studies of solanaceous plants (tomato, eggplant, pepper, potato etc.).

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