Embracing bioinformatics in gene banks

Last changed: 03 July 2019


Selected news 
by Mistra Biotech

"The preservation of plant biodiversity is the task of the roughly 1,750 gene banks distributed around the world. They store plant samples and sometimes additional phenotypic or genetic information of around 7.4 million accessions of plant species in total. It is expected that with facilitated access to improved, quicker and cheaper sequencing and other omics technologies, the number of well-characterised accessions and the amount of detailed information that needs to be stored along with the biological material will grow rapidly and continuously."

"A team of scientists from the Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK) in Gatersleben has now looked ahead into the upcoming challenges and possibilities of the future of gene banks by publishing a perspective paper in Nature Genetics."

"The scientists identified three major challenges for gene banks that need attention. Two are caused by the basic demands of managing tens of thousands of seed lots, namely, the tracking of the identity of accessions, and the need to avoid unnecessary duplications within and between gene banks. The third challenge is that of maintaining the genetic integrity of accessions, due to the inherent drawbacks of using ex situ conservation such as differential survival, drift and genetic erosion in storage and regeneration." - Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research 1/7



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