Barley Genome Sequenced: A Story of Malting Genes and Vulnerable Diversity

A ten-nation consortium has reported the first high-quality reference genome sequence of barley, a cereal crop that is used around the world as animal fodder. Moreover, malted barley grains are the raw material for popular beverages such as beer and whiskey. The barley genome was sequenced and asembled using an array of state-of-the-art methods, taking ten years. For the first time, scientists can now locate all genes precisely in the genome and analyze complex gene families that play a key role in the malting and resilience. The barley genome sequence also highlighted regions vulnerable to genetic erosion and will help breeders recover genetic diversity in their crop improvements efforts. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)