More importantly, the results demonstrated that the selection applied by ancient farmers seemed to play a stronger impact on maize evolution than the breeding techniques adopted by modern breeders. Hybridization in agriculture is vitally important to maintain genetic diversity, and sustains the quality and yield of a crop. In this study, researchers found that many of the changes in the patterns of gene expression had been concentrated in the genes selected for heterosis by modern breeding techniques. These findings suggest that modern breeders should devote more efforts to make effective improvement on candidates by introducing more diversity at the regions linked with selection.Dr. Xun Xu, Deputy Director of BGI, said, "Genetic improvement of crops is the key output of breeding research. The two studies provide a new way to comprehensively understand maize's genetic diversity and evolutionary history as well as offer an invaluable guidance for botanists and breeders to improve this vital crop."
BGI has a proven track record of excellence, delivering results with high efficiency and accuracy for innovative, high-profile research; research that has generated over 170 publications in top-tier journals such as Nature and Science. BGI's many accomplishments include: sequencing one percent of the human genome for the International Human Genome Project, contributing 10 percent to the International Human HapMap Project, carrying out research to combat SARS and German deadly E. coli, playing a key role in the Sino-British Chicken Genome Project, and completing the sequence of the rice genome, the silkworm genome, the first Asian diploid genome, the potato genome, and, more recently, have sequenced the human Gut Metagenome and a significant proportion of the genomes for the 1000 Genomes Project.
For more information about BGI, please visit www.genomics.cn
Jia Liu | EurekAlert!
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