NEW YORK, May 4 (GenomeWeb News) - The United States Department of Agriculture has awarded the National Center for Genome Resources $1.2 million to develop the Legume Information System (LIS) -- a web-based resource containing data on legumes as well as bioinformatics and visualization software.
LIS is a component of the Model Plant Initiative, an effort to translate biological information from well-studied plant species to legumes, such as soybeans, peanuts, and alfalfa.
NCGR has already spent two years developing LIS, which currently contains genomic information for the model legumes Medicago truncatula (barrel medic) and Lotus japonicus (Japanese bird's foot trefoil), as well as soybean.
Continued USDA support "will allow us to extend the capabilities of the LIS to understand the genetic networks that underlie complex systems of legume biology," said Bill Beavis, chief scientific officer of NCGR, in a statement. "LIS is helping us to find genes responsible for production of essential amino acids and nitrogen fixation without having to sequence the entire genomes of soybean and alfalfa."
Separately, NCGR announced that it has appointed Stephen Kingsmore as president and Susan Baxter as COO. Kingsmore joins NCGR from Molecular Staging, where he was COO. Prior to that, he served as vice president of research at Curagen. Baxter was previously vice president of research and genome analysis at GeneFormatics, now Cengent Therapeutics.