Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Genomics
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

BGI Reports the First Genome Sequence of Domestic Goat

Published: Tuesday, January 08, 2013
Last Updated: Tuesday, January 08, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Work sets a good example for facilitating de novo assembly of large genomes.

In a collaborative study published online today in Nature Biotechnology, researchers from Kunming Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, BGI, and other institutes, have completed the first genome sequence of domestic goat by a robust approach integrated with next-generation sequencing (NGS) and whole-genome mapping (WGM) technologies. The goat genome is the first reference genome for small ruminant animals and may help to advance the understanding of distinct ruminants’ genomic features from non-ruminant species. This work also yields a valuable experience for facilitating the de novo assemblies of large, complex genomes in the future.

Goats are recognized as an important member of the world livestock industry, and with many unique biological features. They are an important economic resource in many developing countries around the world, especially in China and India. However, despite their agricultural and biological importance, breeding and genetic studies of goats have been hampered by the lack of a high quality reference genome sequence. The goat genome sequence will be useful for facilitating the identification of SNP markers for marker-assisted breeding, and improving the utility of the goat as a biomedical model and bioreactor.

With the availability of next-generation sequencing (NGS), draft assemblies are easy to generate nowadays. However, to finish a sequence to the chromosome level remains a hard nut to crack. In this study, the results show that a single NGS platform, when combined with whole-genome mapping technology, could produce a finished assembly much faster and with high quality than other currently available mapping strategies such as BACs or FISH. Through this integrated approach, researchers obtained the ~2.66 Gb goat reference genome from a female Yunnan black goat.

Transposable elements (TEs) are major components of mammalian genomes and contribute to gene and/or genome evolution. The TEs in goat genome are similar to those of cattle, and contain large numbers of ruminant-specific repeats, such as SINE-tRNA and SINE-BovA. It is reported that SINE-BovA repeat expanded primarily in the cattle genome. However, in this study, researchers found the SINE-tRNA repeat expanded specifically in the goat genome.

Through constructing a phylogenetic tree among goats, cattle, horses, dogs, opossums and humans, researchers found the goat shared a common ancestor with cattle about 23 million years ago. Further comparison analysis revealed 44 rapidly evolving genes under positive selection, seven of which are immune-related genes and three are pituitary hormone or related genes. The immune-related genes identified also exist in cattle. The findings suggest that the rapid evolution of pituitary hormones may be related to the different features between goat and cattle in milk production, development rates of the fetus and/or hair variation.

The major histocompatibility complex (MHC) plays an important role in the immune system. In this study, the goat MHC was found to be located on chromosome 23 and contains two regions with length of 2.25 Mb and 360 kb, respectively. With the high quality genome assembly, further understanding of the goat MHC will be useful for immunological studies and vaccine development.

One of the distinguishing characteristics of mammals is the protective growth known as hair. It is produced by hair follicles within the skin, which could provide either protection (guard hairs) or insulation (underfur). The two major hair follicles include the primary hair follicle that produces only coat hair in all mammals, and the secondary hair follicle that can produce the cashmere or “fine hair” in certain mammals, including goats and antelopes. Despite a 2,500-year history and the extent of raw cashmere production, people are lack of understanding of the molecular mechanisms of cashmere formation and development.

Researchers conducted transcriptomic analysis on the primary and secondary follicles of a cashmere goat, revealing 51 genes that are differentially expressed between the two types of hair follicles. Keratin and keratin-associated proteins are the main structural proteins of hair fibers, determining the quality of fiber together. In the study, 29 keratin genes and 30 keratin-associated protein genes were detected in both types of follicles. Interestingly, they found two keratin genes and ten keratin-associated protein genes were consistently differentially expressed between primary and secondary hair follicles, suggesting that the keratin-associated protein genes may be more important in determining the structure of cashmere fibers. In addition to the keratin genes and keratin-associated protein genes, researchers also found several enzymes of amino acid biosynthesis, with implications in regulating primary hair growth and hair cycle.

Xun Xu, Deputy Director of BGI, said, “The goat reference genome is an important stepping stone in the molecular breeding of cashmere goats, and will help to advance the comparative studies on ruminants. The transcriptomic analysis on the primary and secondary follicles will open a new way for better improving the quality cashmere wool.”


Further Information
Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 2,400+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 3,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.

Related Content

BGI, GE Healthcare Team Up
Companies have jointly announced pioneering multi-year research collaboration in stem cell science.
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
BGI-BOX Terminal Server Debut Operation in China Agricultural University
BGI’s first cloud computing terminal server allows users to access bioinformatics analysis and genomic data in their own laboratories with the advantages of easy to use, high flexibility and user-friendly interface.
Monday, December 19, 2011
First Complete Sequencing of Mongolian Genome
This genomic study will help researchers to better understand the evolutionary process and migration of Mongolians and their ancestors from Africa to Asia.
Monday, December 19, 2011
Scientific News
RNAi Screening Trends
Understand current trends and learn which application areas are expected to gain in popularity over the next few years.
New Weapon in the Fight Against Blood Cancer
This strategy, which uses patients’ own immune cells, genetically engineered to target tumors, has shown significant success against multiple myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cells that is largely incurable.
Toxin from Salmonid Fish has Potential to Treat Cancer
Researchers from the University of Freiburg decode molecular mechanism of fish pathogen.
Study Finds Non-Genetic Cancer Mechanism
Cancer can be caused solely by protein imbalances within cells, a study of ovarian cancer has found.
Scientists Create CRISPR/Cas9 Knock-In Mutations in Human T Cells
In a project spearheaded by investigators at UC San Francisco, scientists have devised a new strategy to precisely modify human T cells using the genome-editing system known as CRISPR/Cas9.
Tracking Breast Cancer Before it Grows
A team of scientists led by University of Saskatchewan researcher Saroj Kumar is using cutting-edge Canadian Light Source techniques to screen and treat breast cancer at its earliest changes.
DNA Damage Seen in Patients Undergoing CT Scanning
Along with the burgeoning use of advanced medical imaging tests over the past decade have come rising public health concerns about possible links between low-dose radiation and cancer.
The Mystery of the Instant Noodle Chromosomes
Researchers from the Lomonosov Moscow State University evaluated the benefits of placing the DNA on the principle of spaghetti.
Oxitec ‘Self-Limiting Gene’ Offers Hope for Controlling Invasive Moth
A new pesticide-free and environmentally-friendly way to control insect pests has moved ahead with the publication of results showing that Oxitec diamondback moths (DBM) with a ‘self-limiting gene’ can dramatically reduce populations of DBM.
Web App Helps Researchers Explore Cancer Genetics
Brown University computer scientists have developed a new interactive tool to help researchers and clinicians explore the genetic underpinnings of cancer.
Skyscraper Banner

Skyscraper Banner
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
2,400+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FREE!