The Perennial Ryegrass GenomeZipper: Targeted Use of Genome Resources for Comparative Grass Genomics

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Pfeifer, Matthias
Martis, Mihaela
Asp, Torben
Mayer, Klaus
Byrne, Stephen
Frei, Ursula
Studer, Bruno
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The Department of Agronomy seeks to teach the study of the farm-field, its crops, and its science and management. It originally consisted of three sub-departments to do this: Soils, Farm-Crops, and Agricultural Engineering (which became its own department in 1907). Today, the department teaches crop sciences and breeding, soil sciences, meteorology, agroecology, and biotechnology.

The Department of Agronomy was formed in 1902. From 1917 to 1935 it was known as the Department of Farm Crops and Soils.

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  • Department of Farm Crops and Soils (1917–1935)

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Whole-genome sequences established for model and major crop species constitute a key resource for advanced genomic research. For outbreeding forage and turf grass species like ryegrasses (Lolium spp.), such resources are yet to be developed. Here, we present a model of the perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne L.) genome on the basis of conserved synteny to barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) and the model grass genome Brachypodium (Brachypodium distachyon L.), as well as rice (Oryza sativa L.) and sorghum [Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench]. A transcriptome-based genetic linkage map of perennial ryegrass served as a scaffold to establish the chromosomal arrangement of syntenic genes from model grass species. This scaffold revealed a high degree of synteny and macro-collinearity, and was then utilised to anchor a collection of perennial ryegrass genes in silico to their predicted genome position. This resulted in the unambiguous assignment of 3,315 out of 8,876 previously unmapped genes to the respective chromosomes. In total, the GenomeZipper incorporates 4,035 conserved grass gene loci which were used for the first genomewide sequence divergence analysis between perennial ryegrass, barley, Brachypodium, rice, and sorghum. The perennial ryegrass GenomeZipper is an ordered, information-rich genome scaffold, facilitating map-based cloning and genome assembly in perennial ryegrass and closely related Poaceae species. It also represents a milestone in describing synteny between perennial ryegrass and fully sequenced model grass genomes, thereby increasing our understanding of genome organization and evolution in the most important temperate forage and turf grass species.


This is a manuscript of an article published as Pfeifer, Matthias, Mihaela Martis, Torben Asp, Klaus FX Mayer, Thomas Lübberstedt, Stephen Byrne, Ursula Frei, and Bruno Studer. "The perennial ryegrass GenomeZipper: targeted use of genome resources for comparative grass genomics." Plant physiology 161, no. 2 (2013): 571-582. doi: 10.1104/pp.112.207282. Copyright American Society of Plant Biologists. Posted with permission.

Tue Jan 01 00:00:00 UTC 2013