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Albany, CA, United States

Saathoff A.J.,Forage and Bioenergy Research Unit | Sarath G.,Forage and Bioenergy Research Unit | Chow E.K.,Genomics and Gene Discovery Research Unit | Dien B.S.,Bioenergy Research Unit | Tobias C.M.,Genomics and Gene Discovery Research Unit

Cinnamyl alcohol dehydrogenase (CAD) catalyzes the last step in monolignol biosynthesis and genetic evidence indicates CAD deficiency in grasses both decreases overall lignin, alters lignin structure and increases enzymatic recovery of sugars. To ascertain the effect of CAD downregulation in switchgrass, RNA mediated silencing of CAD was induced through Agrobacterium mediated transformation of cv. "Alamo" with an inverted repeat construct containing a fragment derived from the coding sequence of PviCAD2. The resulting primary transformants accumulated less CAD RNA transcript and protein than control transformants and were demonstrated to be stably transformed with between 1 and 5 copies of the TDNA. CAD activity against coniferaldehyde, and sinapaldehyde in stems of silenced lines was significantly reduced as was overall lignin and cutin. Glucose release from ground samples pretreated with ammonium hydroxide and digested with cellulases was greater than in control transformants. When stained with the lignin and cutin specific stain phloroglucinol-HCl the staining intensity of one line indicated greater incorporation of hydroxycinnamyl aldehydes in the lignin. Source

Hastie A.R.,BioNano Genomics | Dong L.,Genomics and Gene Discovery Research Unit | Dong L.,University of California at Davis | Smith A.,BioNano Genomics | And 13 more authors.

Next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies have enabled high-throughput and low-cost generation of sequence data; however, de novo genome assembly remains a great challenge, particularly for large genomes. NGS short reads are often insufficient to create large contigs that span repeat sequences and to facilitate unambiguous assembly. Plant genomes are notorious for containing high quantities of repetitive elements, which combined with huge genome sizes, makes accurate assembly of these large and complex genomes intractable thus far. Using two-color genome mapping of tiling bacterial artificial chromosomes (BAC) clones on nanochannel arrays, we completed high-confidence assembly of a 2.1-Mb, highly repetitive region in the large and complex genome of Aegilops tauschii, the D-genome donor of hexaploid wheat (Triticum aestivum). Genome mapping is based on direct visualization of sequence motifs on single DNA molecules hundreds of kilobases in length. With the genome map as a scaffold, we anchored unplaced sequence contigs, validated the initial draft assembly, and resolved instances of misassembly, some involving contigs <2 kb long, to dramatically improve the assembly from 75% to 95% complete. © 2013 Hastie et al. Source

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