IWGSC scientists unveiled genetic blueprint of bread wheat

Jul 19, 2014 17:30 IST

The scientists at the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium (IWGSC) on 17 July 2014 unveiled the genetic blueprint of bread wheat. The scientists at IWGSC, to which three research institutes from India are also a partner, published the first draft sequence of the wheat genome.

The importance of gene sequencing of wheat

  • The unveiling of genome sequence of wheat will make possible the increase in wheat productivity and better resistance to climate change.
  • It will facilitate mapping and cloning of genes of agronomic importance in much lesser time and at a cheaper cost due to recognition of many gene markers during the sequencing.
  • Decoding the wheat genome would facilitate understanding of the gene function.
  • It will ensure food security and the development of sustainable agriculture in the context of climate change and growing population.

The efforts to accomplish this task was first formulated in 2005 when an International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium was formed. There are 15 countries in the consortium including India.

The contribution of India

Three leading institutes — Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), Ludhiana; National Research Centre on Plant Biotechnology, New Delhi; and South Campus Delhi University with the financial support from the department of biotechnology (DBT), were entrusted with the responsibility of decoding one chromosome designated as 2A.

The chromosome 2A is about 900 million bases in size and is about one-third the size of the human genome and 2.5 times the size of the rice genome.

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Quick Digest

Who: Genome sequence of wheat

What: Unveiled

When: 17 July 2014

Is this article important for exams ? Yes58 People Agreed

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