First Harmful Algal Bloom Species Genome SequencedFebruary 25, 2011
Researchers at Stony Brook University's School of Marine and Atmospheric and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) in USA have revealed why the microscopic phytoplankton Aureococcus anophagefferens dominates other phytoplankton in the oceans by causing brown tides. Through the new advances in genomics, they were able to identify the phytoplankton's unique gene complement that enables it to outcompete others and bloom in human-modified ecosystems. Though the plankton does not produce toxins that poison humans, the long-term bloom poisons bivalves and destroys sea grass beds and shellfisheries leading to billion dollar worth of losses.
"When we looked at the coastal ecosystems where we find Aureococcus blooms, we found they were enriched in organic matter, were very turbid and enriched in trace metals," said research leader Christopher Gobler. "And when we looked at the genome of Aureococcus, it ended up being enriched in genes to take advantage of these conditions. The surprise was the concordance between the genome and the ecosystem where it's blooming…We now know this organism is genetically predisposed to exploit certain characteristics of coastal ecosystems. We also know the characteristics are there because of activities of man," Gobler said. "If we continue to increase, for example, organic matter in coastal waters, then it's going to continue to favor brown tides since it is genetically predisposed to thrive in these conditions."
Results of their study is published in the February 21 edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The research team is now investigating the RNA of Aurecoccus to know how genes are expressed during the lifetime of the bloom.
For more information, visit http://www.whoi.edu/page.do?pid=7545&tid=282&cid=90450&ct=162.
Biotech Updates is a weekly newsletter of ISAAA, a not-for-profit organization. It is distributed for free to over 22,000 subscribers worldwide to inform them about the key developments in biosciences, especially in biotechnology. Your support will help us in our mission to feed the world with knowledge. You can help by donating as little as $10.
See more articles:
News from Around the World
- Annual Global Status Report of Commercialized Biotech/GM Crops Launched in Sao Paulo, Brazil
- CBD and GEF Partner to Advance Nagoya Outcomes at the Regional Level
- FAO Gets Support for Climate Change Program
- Anti-government Protests Lead to Destruction of Gene Banks in Egypt
- U of I Researcher Receives USDA Grant to Study Soybean Flowering Response
- Cornell Releases Two New Potato Varieties
- Dupont to Expand Biotech Soybean R&D Program
- Brazil´s CTNBio Approves Cotton with TwinLink® Technology from Bayer CropScience
- Indian President Announces Establishment of Biotech-Related Systems
- AFAA Executive Director Speaks Up for GM Canola
- Nasim Receives BioAsia Award 2011
- Stacking Multiple Genes for Better Pest Control of Tomatoes
- BiotechCorp Grants BioNexus Status to GlycosBio
- Pakistan-Argentina Collaborate on S&T
- EU Committee Oks Low Level Presence of GMOs in Animal Feed Imports
- UK-Malaysia Collaborate on Plant and Microbial Research
- UK Consortium to Do Wheat Breeding Research
- New Path to Water Efficient Seeds Opens with TIP
- Anthocyanin Production Used as Selection Marker During Plant Transformation
- Researchers Map Fiber Quality Traits of Upland Cotton Using Three-parent Composite Population
- GE Tomatoes Show Opposite Responses to Abiotic and Biotic Stresses
Beyond Crop Biotech
- First Harmful Algal Bloom Species Genome Sequenced
- ICABBBE 2011: International Conference on Agricultural Biosystems, Biotech and Biological Engineering
- GMHT: Risks and Opportunities for Spain
- Paraguay Biotech Annual Report
- Uruguay Biotech Annual Report
Read the latest:
- Biotech Updates (November 29, 2023)
- Gene Editing Supplement (November 29, 2023)
- Gene Drive Supplement (February 22, 2023)
Subscribe to BU: