Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

NSF to Grant $12M in 2010 for Tree of Life Project

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – The National Science Foundation plans to give $12 million next year to fund its Assembling the Tree of Life program, which aims to increase and assemble knowledge about life on earth, including genomic and taxonomic information.

The grant program will support between three and six awards next year with up to $3 million for durations of up to five years. The aim is to use various methods and approaches to assemble the map of the 1.7 million species that have been identified.

The AToL effort has five major goals: increasing the numbers of taxa and data sets in order to resolve phylogenetic relationships among major taxonomic groups (including phyla and kingdoms); focusing on major groups of prokaryotes, protists, protostomes, and viruses; developing R&D tools for computational phylogenetics and phyloinformatics; integrating all the major taxonomic groups to produce the phylogenetic framework for the Tree of Life; and conducting outreach and education in comparative phylogenetic biology and paleontology, and emphasizing new training activities, information science education, and internet resources and dissemination.

Some of the studies may be taxonomy-oriented and others may be theory-oriented.

The theory-oriented projects should address research computational phylogenetics and phyloinformatics and focus on alignment and analysis of gene order, such as genomic or morphological data, molecular clock estimates, integrating fossil evidence, and others.

The taxonomic projects should address the broad taxonomic scope of research and comprehensive plans for sampling and data collection.

The Scan

White-Tailed Deer Harbor SARS-CoV-2 Variants No Longer Infecting Humans, Study Finds

A new study in PNAS has found that white-tailed deer could act as a reservoir of SARS-CoV-2 variants no longer found among humans.

Study Points to Benefits of Local Consolidative Therapy, Targeted Treatments in Cancer Care

In JCO Precision Oncology, researchers report that local consolidative therapy combined with molecularly targeted treatments could improve survival for some lung cancer patients.

Genetic Variants That Lower LDL Cholesterol Linked to Reduced Heart Disease Risk

Rare variants in two genes that lower LDL cholesterol are also associated with a decreased risk of coronary heart disease, according to a new JAMA Cardiology study.

Study Links Evolution of Longevity, Social Organization in Mammals

With the help of comparative phylogenetics and transcriptomics, researchers in Nature Communications see ties between lifespan and social organization in mammals.