+

X

Quality Statement

Pacific Biosciences is committed to providing high-quality products that meet customer expectations and comply with regulations. We will achieve these goals by adhering to and maintaining an effective quality-management system designed to ensure product quality, performance, and safety.

X

Image Use Agreement

By downloading, copying, or making any use of the images located on this website (“Site”) you acknowledge that you have read and understand, and agree to, the terms of this Image Usage Agreement, as well as the terms provided on the Legal Notices webpage, which together govern your use of the images as provided below. If you do not agree to such terms, do not download, copy or use the images in any way, unless you have written permission signed by an authorized Pacific Biosciences representative.

Subject to the terms of this Agreement and the terms provided on the Legal Notices webpage (to the extent they do not conflict with the terms of this Agreement), you may use the images on the Site solely for (a) editorial use by press and/or industry analysts, (b) in connection with a normal, peer-reviewed, scientific publication, book or presentation, or the like. You may not alter or modify any image, in whole or in part, for any reason. You may not use any image in a manner that misrepresents the associated Pacific Biosciences product, service or technology or any associated characteristics, data, or properties thereof. You also may not use any image in a manner that denotes some representation or warranty (express, implied or statutory) from Pacific Biosciences of the product, service or technology. The rights granted by this Agreement are personal to you and are not transferable by you to another party.

You, and not Pacific Biosciences, are responsible for your use of the images. You acknowledge and agree that any misuse of the images or breach of this Agreement will cause Pacific Biosciences irreparable harm. Pacific Biosciences is either an owner or licensee of the image, and not an agent for the owner. You agree to give Pacific Biosciences a credit line as follows: "Courtesy of Pacific Biosciences of California, Inc., Menlo Park, CA, USA" and also include any other credits or acknowledgments noted by Pacific Biosciences. You must include any copyright notice originally included with the images on all copies.

IMAGES ARE PROVIDED BY Pacific Biosciences ON AN "AS-IS" BASIS. Pacific Biosciences DISCLAIMS ALL REPRESENTATIONS AND WARRANTIES, EXPRESS, IMPLIED OR STATUTORY, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, NON-INFRINGEMENT, OWNERSHIP, MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. IN NO EVENT SHALL Pacific Biosciences BE LIABLE FOR ANY DIRECT, INDIRECT, INCIDENTAL, PUNITIVE, OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OF ANY KIND WHATSOEVER WITH RESPECT TO THE IMAGES.

You agree that Pacific Biosciences may terminate your access to and use of the images located on the PacificBiosciences.com website at any time and without prior notice, if it considers you to have violated any of the terms of this Image Use Agreement. You agree to indemnify, defend and hold harmless Pacific Biosciences, its officers, directors, employees, agents, licensors, suppliers and any third party information providers to the Site from and against all losses, expenses, damages and costs, including reasonable attorneys' fees, resulting from any violation by you of the terms of this Image Use Agreement or Pacific Biosciences' termination of your access to or use of the Site. Termination will not affect Pacific Biosciences' rights or your obligations which accrued before the termination.

I have read and understand, and agree to, the Image Usage Agreement.

I disagree and would like to return to the Pacific Biosciences home page.

Pacific Biosciences
Contact:

2017 SMRT Grant Finalist

Unravelling the Mysteries of the Explosive Bombardier Beetle

Principal Investigators:
Dr. Tanya Renner, San Diego State University
Dr. Aman Gill, University of California, Berkeley
Dr. Wendy Moore, University of Arizona
Dr. Kipling Will, University of California, Berkeley
Dr. Athula Attygalle, Stevens Institute of Technology

About This Project

Although powerful chemical weapons are rare in the animal world, some insects use them to protect themselves against their enemies. Bombardier beetles (Brachinus elongatulus) have taken this to an extreme. They explosively blast boiling hot, noxious chemicals from their abdomen at their predators. We propose to sequence the bombardier beetle genome to learn how this remarkable beetle makes these toxic chemicals, stores them within its body, and discharges them without self-injury.

 

Why is this the most interesting genome in the world?
Bombardiers are among the world’s most impressive chemists. Unlike pheromones used for communication, their genetic machinery provides for biochemical warfare. They repel predators with rapid-fire, precisely-aimed explosive discharges of a toxic chemical mix at over 100°C, earning them lead roles in media and culture. Yet the genomic basis of this extraordinary ability remains a mystery. The first bombardier genome will allow us to understand the genetic basis of bombardier chemical production, solving a long-standing evolutionary puzzle. This understanding will elucidate the currently unknown genetic basis of explosive chemical defense in the animal kingdom.

 

What are the goals of this project?
Our goal is to assemble the complete genome of the bombardier beetle, Brachinus elongatulus, using PacBio’s SMRT Sequencing technology. A Brachinus genome (~500 Mb) will accelerate our ongoing National Science Foundation-funded research, helping us to resolve the genetic basis of carabid beetle chemical defense. We are currently using comparative transcriptomics to identify the genes and biochemical pathways involved in the production of defensive chemicals. The complete genome will elevate this research by i) revealing the genomic architecture of biosynthesis genes and the regulatory factors controlling their expression, ii) allowing us to pinpoint or exclude biosynthetic roles played by microbes or horizontal gene transfer events, iii) enabling comparative studies into the immense diversity of biosynthetic pathways in other ground beetle species.

 

What is the global impact of your research?
The Brachinus genome will be used by many researchers, as it will be the first genome from a major branch of the tree of life, the beetle suborder Adephaga, providing a unique point of comparison to other insects and to the few existing beetle genomes, which are all from other suborders. We will use it to provide a framework for understanding the genetic basis of defensive chemical systems and a new foundation for research in chemical biosynthesis. Our genome-based findings of the bombardier beetle will provide a solid evidence-based explanation for their remarkable defensive strategy, shedding light on a mystery that has given rise to extensive speculation but few solid answers, thus making bombardier beetles a valuable and powerful evolutionary case study for the classroom.

 
Project Team (in addition to PIs)

  • Reilly McManus, University of Arizona
  • Dr. Thomas Eisner (in memoriam, 1929 – 2011)

 

Additional Resource
Watch the Bombardier beetle’s “chemical cannon” in action

 

Social
#SeqtheBeetle

Event

International Plant & Animal Genome (PAG) XXVI

January 13, 2018-January 17, 2018

Stay
Current

Visit our blog »