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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Movie: The new biology

This documentary film features the wave of cutting-edge technologies that now provide the opportunity to create predictive models of living systems, and gain wisdom about the fundamental nature of life itself. The potential impact for humanity is immense: from fighting complex diseases such as cancer, enabling proactive surveillance of virulent pathogens, and increasing food crop production.

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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Movie: The new biology part III – infectious disease

Part III of The New Biology documentary. This documentary film features the wave of cutting-edge technologies that now provide the opportunity to create predictive models of living systems, and gain wisdom about the fundamental nature of life itself. The potential impact for humanity is immense: from fighting complex diseases such as cancer, enabling proactive surveillance of virulent pathogens, and increasing food crop production.

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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Video: Sample of an unknown soldier

Research into a bacterial sample from World War I has revealed secrets of the dysentery-causing strain’s success and uncovered the story of the soldier behind the sample.

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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

PAG Conference: Endless forms: Genomes from the Darwin Tree of Life Project

Mark Blaxter, project lead of the Sanger Institute’s Darwin Tree of Life, shared an update of the ambitious effort to sequence all 60,000 species believed to be on the British Isles over the next 12 years in this presentation at the PAG 2020 Conference. The Sanger team has already generated data for 94 species, including 44 new moth and butterfly (Lepidoptera) PacBio assemblies, which Blaxter describes in this presentation.

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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Webinar: Bioinformatics lunch & learn – Better assemblies of bacterial genomes and plasmids with the new microbial assembly pipeline in SMRT Link v8.0

Microbial Assembly is our latest pipeline, specifically designed to assemble bacterial genomes (between 2 and 10 Mb) and plasmids. This pipeline includes the implementation of a new, circular-aware read alignment tool (Raptor), among other algorithmic improvements, which will be covered in this webinar. The topics covered include, staged assembly of bacterial chromosomes and plasmids, implementation of Raptor, a circular-aware read aligner, himeric read detection, origin of replication orientation, troubleshooting and more.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Improving the reference with a diversity panel of sequence-resolved structural variation

Although the accuracy of the human reference genome is critical for basic and clinical research, structural variants (SVs) have been difficult to assess because data capable of resolving them have been limited. To address potential bias, we sequenced a diversity panel of nine human genomes to high depth using long-read, single-molecule, real-time sequencing data. Systematically identifying and merging SVs =50 bp in length for these nine and one public genome yielded 83,909 sequence-resolved insertions, deletions, and inversions. Among these, 2,839 (2.0 Mbp) are shared among all discovery genomes with an additional 13,349 (6.9 Mbp) present in the majority of humans,…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Chlorella vulgaris genome assembly and annotation reveals the molecular basis for metabolic acclimation to high light conditions.

Chlorella vulgaris is a fast-growing fresh-water microalga cultivated at the industrial scale for applications ranging from food to biofuel production. To advance our understanding of its biology and to establish genetics tools for biotechnological manipulation, we sequenced the nuclear and organelle genomes of Chlorella vulgaris 211/11P by combining next generation sequencing and optical mapping of isolated DNA molecules. This hybrid approach allowed to assemble the nuclear genome in 14 pseudo-molecules with an N50 of 2.8 Mb and 98.9% of scaffolded genome. The integration of RNA-seq data obtained at two different irradiances of growth (high light-HL versus low light -LL) enabled…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Chromosome-level reference genome of X12, a highly virulent race of the soybean cyst nematode Heterodera glycines.

Soybean cyst nematode (SCN, Heterodera glycines) is a major pest of soybean that is spreading across major soybean production regions worldwide. Increased SCN virulence has recently been observed in both the United States and China. However, no study has reported a genome assembly for H. glycines at the chromosome scale. Herein, the first chromosome-level reference genome of X12, an unusual SCN race with high infection ability, is presented. Using whole-genome shotgun (WGS) sequencing, PacBio sequencing, Illumina paired-end sequencing, 10X Genomics linked reads and high-throughput chromatin conformation capture (Hi-C) genome scaffolding techniques, a 141.01-Mb assembled genome was obtained with scaffold and…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Lateral transfers of large DNA fragments spread functional genes among grasses.

A fundamental tenet of multicellular eukaryotic evolution is that vertical inheritance is paramount, with natural selection acting on genetic variants transferred from parents to offspring. This lineal process means that an organism’s adaptive potential can be restricted by its evolutionary history, the amount of standing genetic variation, and its mutation rate. Lateral gene transfer (LGT) theoretically provides a mechanism to bypass many of these limitations, but the evolutionary importance and frequency of this process in multicellular eukaryotes, such as plants, remains debated. We address this issue by assembling a chromosome-level genome for the grass Alloteropsis semialata, a species surmised to…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Genome-wide selection footprints and deleterious variations in young Asian allotetraploid rapeseed.

Brassica napus (AACC, 2n = 38) is an important oilseed crop grown worldwide. However, little is known about the population evolution of this species, the genomic difference between its major genetic groups, such as European and Asian rapeseed, and the impacts of historical large-scale introgression events on this young tetraploid. In this study, we reported the de novo assembly of the genome sequences of an Asian rapeseed (B. napus), Ningyou 7, and its four progenitors and compared these genomes with other available genomic data from diverse European and Asian cultivars. Our results showed that Asian rapeseed originally derived from European rapeseed but subsequently…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Early Sex-chromosome Evolution in the Diploid Dioecious Plant Mercurialis annua.

Suppressed recombination allows divergence between homologous sex chromosomes and the functionality of their genes. Here, we reveal patterns of the earliest stages of sex-chromosome evolution in the diploid dioecious herb Mercurialis annua on the basis of cytological analysis, de novo genome assembly and annotation, genetic mapping, exome resequencing of natural populations, and transcriptome analysis. The genome assembly contained 34,105 expressed genes, of which 10,076 were assigned to linkage groups. Genetic mapping and exome resequencing of individuals across the species range both identified the largest linkage group, LG1, as the sex chromosome. Although the sex chromosomes of M. annua are karyotypically…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

A microbial factory for defensive kahalalides in a tripartite marine symbiosis.

Chemical defense against predators is widespread in natural ecosystems. Occasionally, taxonomically distant organisms share the same defense chemical. Here, we describe an unusual tripartite marine symbiosis, in which an intracellular bacterial symbiont (“Candidatus Endobryopsis kahalalidefaciens”) uses a diverse array of biosynthetic enzymes to convert simple substrates into a library of complex molecules (the kahalalides) for chemical defense of the host, the alga Bryopsis sp., against predation. The kahalalides are subsequently hijacked by a third partner, the herbivorous mollusk Elysia rufescens, and employed similarly for defense. “Ca E. kahalalidefaciens” has lost many essential traits for free living and acts as a…

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Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Complete Genome Sequence of Hydrocarbon-Degrading Halotolerant Acinetobacter radioresistens DD78, Isolated from the Aconcagua River Mouth in Central Chile.

Acinetobacter radioresistens strain DD78 (= CCUG 69565) is a soil hydrocarbon-degrading and biosurfactant-producing bacterium isolated from chronically crude oil-polluted soil of the Aconcagua River mouth in Chile. The 3.25-Mb A. radioresistens DD78 genome (41.8% GC content) was completely sequenced, with 4 replicons, 2,970 coding sequences, and 77 tRNAs.Copyright © 2019 Macaya et al.

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