Crop Biotech Update

Researchers Analyze the Pea Aphid Genome

April 8, 2010

Analysis of the newly-sequenced pea aphid genome has been initiated by a team of University of Miami researchers. Pea aphids, small, green insects that feed on the sap of legumes and other forage crops, cause direct damage to the plant and are carriers of vector-transmitted viruses. Termed as gene annotation, the study will help scientists determine gene locations and possible genetic functions which could serve as the basis for its control and ecological associations with plants and microbes.

The initiative is being funded by the USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Further work will exploit the genome data in order to understand the complex biology of pea aphids and will help design control measures for several other aphid species that impact U.S. agriculture.

The news article can be seen at http://www.nifa.usda.gov/newsroom/news/2010news/04011_pea_aphid.html.