Draft sequence of diploid A-genome cotton generated

Genome sequence will help improve cotton varieties in the future.

A significant accomplishment has been made in the sequencing of the cotton genome by a Texas Tech research team in collaboration with Bayer CropScience and the National Center for Genome Resources (NGCR), which will fuel multi-disciplinary basic and applied research to help increase cotton productivity.

"This information will significantly advance cotton research worldwide," said Dr. Mike Galyean, dean of Texas Tech's College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. "The genome sequence will eventually lead to improved cotton varieties containing environmentally friendly traits, which are preferred by producers, processors, manufacturers, and consumers."

The annotated draft genome assembly being released is from Gossypium arboretum, an extant representative of the cotton A-genome lineage, which is paired with the D-genome lineage to make present day cultivated cottons.  The A-genome species gave rise to spinnable fiber eventually leading to what is today the modern-day textile industry. 

Dr. Thea Wilkins, former professor of cotton genomics in Texas Tech's Department of Plant and Soil Sciences led the project, in close collaboration with scientists at Bayer CropScience and next-generation genomic sequencing technology and biocomputing providers, KeyGene and NCGR.  The team's findings add to other recent efforts to present an unprecedented view into the structure of the A-genome, which will accelerate research efforts for improving cultivated cotton.

The research was completed under a public-private partnership between the State of Texas, Texas Tech University, and Bayer CropScience.  The draft sequence of G. arboreum is currently deposited in Genbank and was scheduled to be released to the public on December 2, 2014.

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