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International Collaboration Announces Draft Sequence of Rice Genome

NEW YORK, Dec. 18 - Scientists today announced the completion of a draft of the rice genome Oryza sativa japonica.


Researchers called the draft a "high quality, genetic blue-print" of the genome.


"The rice genome's sequence is crucial to our scientific understanding of the staples of life," Rita Colwell, director of the National Science Foundation, said in a statement. "With this data we open new doors at all levels of research [including] universities, private industry and government."


The genome is scheduled to be completed in 2005, according to The Institute for Genomic Research, a partner in the international project.


Researchers from ClemsonUniversity, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, WashingtonUniversity, and the Universityof Arizonaalso participated in the sequencing effort. The international project also includes scientists from Japan, Brazil, China, France, India, South Korea, Taiwanand Thailand.


In November, the collaboration published the full sequences of chromosomes one and four out of a total of 12 chromosomes in the 430 million base pair genome. The public effort was launched in 1998


A private effort sequencing japonica was announced by Syngenta. The Beijing Genomic Institute announced last January a draft of the rice genome Oryza sativa indica.


Click here for more information about the japonica rice genome.

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