Powerboat-World.com
 
 
News Home Video Gallery Newsletters Features FishingBoating Photo Gallery Sail-World Australia Australian Cruising
Sail-World Australia Australian Cruising MarineBusiness-World

 

Sail-World.com : Gene secrets of the Great Barrier Reef revealed

Gene secrets of the Great Barrier Reef revealed

ARC Centre of Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©    Click Here to view large photo

Australian scientists this week announced they have sequenced the genome of the staghorn coral Acropora millepora, a major component of the Great Barrier Reef and coral reefs worldwide.

This is the first animal genome project to be carried out entirely in Australia, and is an important milestone in Australian biotechnology and in the study of coral reefs, said the researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies and the Australian Genome Research Facility (AGRF).

'This is a first for Australian science. Here we show that Australia can unlock the genetic potential of its own unique fauna and flora for the national benefit,' says project coordinator Kirby Siemering from the AGRF.

Corals are the backbone of the Great Barrier Reef, fascinating millions of visitors with their spectacular variety of shapes and flamboyant colours. However, they are also under threat from the effects of climate change, pollution, and disease.

'This project has both practical and scientific significance. It will help us to understand how corals build reefs – and why they fail to do so when they are under stress' says Professor David Miller of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) and James Cook University.

'Corals have iconic significance for Australia. We have the best-preserved coral reef system in the world and the Great Barrier Reef is a cornerstone of a $6 billion a year tourist industry. As reefs elsewhere in the world decline, this value will grow if we can keep our reefs healthy and intact' explains Doctor Eldon Ball from the Australian National University (ANU).

Their study shows that corals may look like simple animals, but their DNA is surprisingly complex. In fact, David Miller says, corals have about the same number of genes as man, and many of them are remarkably like ours.

Acropora millepora - Photo courtesy of Zoe Richards -  ARC Centre of?nid=85655 Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©   Click Here to view large photo

'The Pacific coral, Acropora millepora, is already the best-characterised coral at the molecular level and has yielded important insights into the evolution of all animals,' he explains. 'The availability of the genome sequence will enable major advances in the understanding of many aspects of coral biology, including the responses of corals to climate change, ocean acidification, pollution and disease.'

This project opens new opportunities at a critical time. In the last few years, the cost of genome sequencing has decreased by several orders of magnitude thanks to groundbreaking technological advances. 'These new technologies present us with a unique opportunity to explore the DNA of our fascinating Australian animals. However, what we need is the funding and investment in skills needed to carry out such research', explains Sylvain Foret (CoECRS), who led this initial analysis.

The coral genome sequence has been a national collaborative effort by the Australian Genome Research Facility and researchers in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (CoECRS) based at James Cook University, the Australian National University, Monash University, the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute and the University of Queensland, together with sequencing technology company Illumina. The project has brought together some of the best young minds in Australian genome science to tackle the daunting task of stitching together the approximately 400 million letters of DNA that make up the coral genome.

The coral genome, comprising 28 chromosomes, is amongst the first animal genomes in the world to be sequenced entirely using Illumina sequencing technology, one of the recently emerging 'next generation sequencing' methods that produces huge numbers of short sequence reads each of around 100 letters.

The scientists say one of the main challenges in this project was to reconstruct the hundreds of millions of letters of the coral genome using these very small sequences. An additional challenge was the high level of polymorphism of this genome: like most animals, the coral is diploid (each individual contains two near-identical sets of genes – one from the father, and one from the mother), but the two haplotypes (the father and the mother halves of the genome) are more different in corals than in other animal species. Addressing these challenges required that the Australian scientists develop a number of pioneering genome assembly methods.

The first draft assembly of the Acropora millepora sequence is available to the scientific community under specific conditions.

Typical Acropora colony - Photo courtesy of Carlos Sanchez -  ARC Centre of?nid=85655 Excellence Coral Reef Studies ©   Click Here to view large photo

ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies website




by ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.powerboat-world.com/index.cfm?nid=85655

8:25 AM Fri 8 Jul 2011 GMT






Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on
Environment and the ocean

Related News Stories:

27 Nov 2013  World Oceans Day appeals for funds
16 Nov 2013  Gigantic iceberg sails north from the Antarctic
09 Nov 2013  Sailing and swimming with manatees - Oceans Watch Essay
01 Nov 2013  OceansWatch: cruising sailors give something back in the South Pacific
23 Oct 2013  'The Ocean is Broken' - without fish, there can be no birds
13 Oct 2013  PlanetSolar reaches Paris after successful ocean study
02 Oct 2013  Monaco Yacht Show goes Green
07 Sep 2013  Great Pacific Garbage Patch - the real story
03 Sep 2013  World's largest solar yacht drops anchor after marine science quest
25 Aug 2013  Boat owners: cover vessels to deter seagulls
MORE STORIES ...

Power Boat News













You scratched my seagrass! by Steven Katona, Newport, RI


Join us on Boating Safety Day on 28 September by Roads and Maritime Services,






Dangerous conditions forecast for NSW boaters by Roads and Maritime Services,










Abbot Point onshore disposal by Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority,










Great Barrier Reef plan released for comment by Queensland Minister for Environment,










Brisbane Boat Show begins *Feature by Jeni Bone,
















Marine Auctions adds new recruits
Ministerial advisory group launched by united marine industry sector
2014 Auckland on Water Boat Show: Coming up at the end of September
Australian research sheds light on ocean garbage gyres *Feature
Round the World racer joins Southern Pacific Inflatables
2014 Gold Coast Int'l Marine Expo - Quintrex factory opens its doors
Mediterranean Grand Prix - Pons and Chris win the titles
18 anti-piracy weapons for ships to fight pirates
Skysol Frame Large: A new shading solution for sunroofs
Mediterranean Grand Prix 2014 - Wins for Victory and Chaudron
Mediterranean Grand Prix, UIM-ABP Tour: Pons claims Runabout GP1 win
Mediterranean Grand Prix - Al Zaffain and Bin Hendi win race 1
Court judgement a stark reminder about towing safety
Australian Offshore Superboat 2014 - Superboats ready for Redcliffe
Southport Yacht Club’s annual Sail Past and Blessing of Fleet Ceremony
Gosport Grand Prix of the Sea finale to decide P1 champions
Camper & Nicholsons Yachts presents the Sagitta 42
GT15 and GT30 European Championships - Jelf takes to the podium twice
Marine Rescue crew saves cruiser in trouble in rough conditions
XCAT Series gets set to conquer another continent in 2015
Dangerous conditions for boaters on most of NSW coast   
2014 Mandurah Boat Show - Third largest boat show in Australia   
2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Eye on the big picture   
Mediterranean Grand Prix - Powerboat racing heavyweights head to Ibiza   
Mediterranean Grand Prix - World Aquabike stars all set   
Antarctic sea-level rising faster than global rate   
Powerboat champions gear up for Honda RYA Youth RIB National final   
Andrew Scott joins Superior as General Manager *Feature   
2014 Gold Coast International Marine Expo - Fastest Jet Ski ever built   
Best Birthday Party ever at Southport Yacht Club! *Feature   
‘Hall of Fame’ status for Empire Marina *Feature   
Girl power all set for Nottingham powerboat racing action   
Cowes to Torquay Race 2014 - Intense activity in preparation   
Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show - 13 things to See and do   
Australian Offshore Superboat Champ - 15 Superboats in Coffs Harbour   
European première for Belize 54 Daybridge at Cannes Yachting Festival   
‘Fish Friendly’ accreditation for Sanctuary Cove Marina   
Plethora of Powerboat racing action this weekend   
Vicsail Boat show Open Day at Rushcutters Bay   
Marine15 - prospectus available online now + VIDEO *Feature   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png   http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW PBW
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT