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Chinese, Danish Team Release .66X Coverage of Pig Genome Sequence

NEW YORK, June 6 (GenomeWeb News) - The Chinese Academyof Sciences' Beijing Genomics Institute and the Danish Committee of Pig Breeding and Production have publicly released their pig genome sequence, the partners said today.

The data are based on 3.84 million shotgun sequences, or .66X coverage, of five different domestic pig breeds from Europeand China, the groups said. The data are generated from the Sino-Danish Pig Genome Project, which began in 2001.


The sequence has been deposited into the NCBI Trace repository under the name "SDJVP."

The researchers aligned the non-repetitive fraction of the sequences to the UCSC human-mouse alignment and annotated the resulting data using the human genome annotation. The results "show that for each of these types of orthologous data, pig is much closer to human than mouse is," the researchers report.


"Purifying selection has been more efficient in pig compared to human, but not as efficient as in mouse, and pig seems to have an isochore structure most similar to the structure in human," they write.


The researchers stress, however, that "the low coverage prevents making a real assembly of the pig sequences and, thus, the contig coverage is not estimated. The analyses are therefore based on a very large number of short alignments."

The researchers have also analyzed 100 libraries of expressed sequences from different pig tissues and developmental stages. These sequences will be "released in the near future together with a publication on pig gene expression," the team said in a statement.


The sequencing was paid for with $10 million by CAS, DCPBP, and China's Ministry of Science and Technology Natural Science Foundation.


The research indicates that pig is genetically closer to man than normally used laboratory animals. The finding has "important implications" for the use of pigs in medical research and drug testing.

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