Coral sequencing at HudsonAlpha published in Current Biology

HudsonAlpha’s faculty investigators, Jeremy Schmutz and Jane Grimwood, PhD, are part of an international team of researchers who have concluded that one group coral could adapt to future climate changes because of their high genetic diversity. Schmutz and Grimwood, who are co-directors of the HudsonAlpha Genome Sequencing Center, performed the coral sequencing, helped with directions for the genome work and completed test assemblies of the data sets.

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Genome sequencing could save American chestnuts

The HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology is generating and annotating a reference genome for the American chestnut tree in a project with The American Chestnut Foundation that aims to restore the once dominant tree to forests in the Eastern United States. We are all familiar with the opening lines of The Christmas Song: “Chestnuts roasting on an open fire …” But this collaborative project could mean that those chestnuts might once again come from an American chestnut tree.

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HudsonAlpha collaborators expand sorghum research program

A multi-institutional research effort aims to optimize breeding strategies for grain sorghum for sub-Saharan Africa

Huntsville, Ala. — HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, a nonprofit genomics and genetics research institute, and the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, one of the world’s largest independent plant science institutes, today announced a three-year project to expand and accelerate the development and deployment of advanced sorghum phenotyping and breeding technologies in support of improved varieties for smallholder farmers. The project is funded by a $6.1 million grant to the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

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First marine flowering plant genome sequenced by HudsonAlpha researchers

Genome gives insight to extreme genetic plant adaptations

Huntsville, Ala. — Three researchers from the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology successfully performed DNA sequencing on a new plant genome, Zostera – an eelgrass that is the first of its kind to be sequenced. The work was part of a six-year project with the Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI) that could help researchers understand how plants adapt to extreme environmental changes. The results of the project were published online in Nature on January 27.

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GSC working with the Land Institute to sequence the Kernza genome

The HudsonAlpha Genome Sequencing Center is collaborating with the Land Institute to explore the uses of a certain wheatgrass which is becoming an increasingly popular alternative source for breadmaking and brewing beer.

“This intermediate wheatgrass its called, or perennial wheatgrass is very different than the annual grain of wheat that we plant,” says HudsonAlpha faculty investigator and co-director of the Institute’s Genome Sequencing Center Jeremy Schmutz.

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HudsonAlpha plant researchers contribute to gbM study

Researchers from the US and Germany, including two HudsonAlpha faculty investigators, delve into the roots of gene body methylation in plants in a PNAS article published online July 26, GenomeWeb reports. While most of the plants it analyzed by comparative epigenomics had methylomes resembling Arabidopsis thaliana, the team unearthed a plant lacking gene body methylation: a plant in the Brassicaceae family called Eutrema salsugineum, commonly known as saltwater cress.

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Alabama Farmers Federation features HudsonAlpha researchers

In 2015, Alabama Farmers Cooperative and Alabama Farmers Federation established Simply Southern, the state’s first statewide network television show dedicated to agriculture and rural living.  Simply Southern inspires and educates viewers about farming, food and gardening while entertaining with stories about innovative entrepreneurs, talented artisans, outstanding young people and Alabama’s hidden treasures.

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Cuing environmental responses in fungi

Genomes assembled and finished at HudsonAlpha provide clues to the evolution of sensory perception

Two fungal genomes assembled and finished at the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology are helping researchers understand the evolution of sensory perception. Fungi can sense environmental signals and react accordingly, changing their development, direction of growth and metabolism. Sensory perception lies at the heart of adaptation to changing conditions and helps fungi to improve growth and recycle organic waste and to know when and how to infect a plant or animal host. New results based on characterizing and then conducting a comparative analysis of two genome sequences published online May 26, 2016, in the journal Current Biology shed new light on the evolution of sensory perception in fungi.

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Acorn worm genome assembled at HudsonAlpha reveals evolution of human pharynx

Huntsville, Ala. — An acorn worm genome assembled in the Genome Sequencing Center at the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology is helping researchers understand more about the 570 million year evolution of gills into the human pharynx and jaw. Those conclusions were published online Nov. 18 in Nature.

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HudsonAlpha researchers receive federal grant to study potential biofuel

Huntsville, Ala. — Jeremy Schmutz, faculty investigator at the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology, has received a grant from the Department of Energy that will identify genes in a potential biofuel source. Schmutz, who co-directs the Genome Sequencing Center at HudsonAlpha, will analyze the natural genetic mechanisms of how switchgrass, a native prairie grass, adapts to its local environment. HudsonAlpha will receive $1.2 million over five years to complete the study.

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