Rice Genome

The International Rice Genome Sequencing Project (IRGSP) began in September 1997, at a workshop held in conjunction with the International Symposium on Plant Molecular Biology in Singapore. Scientists from many nations attended the workshop and agreed to an international collaboration to sequence the rice genome. As a result, representatives from Japan, Korea, China, the United Kingdom, and the United States met six months later in Tsukuba to establish the guidelines. The participants agreed to share materials and to the timely release of physical maps and annotated DNA se-quence to public databases. The IRGSP has evolved to include 11 nations, and the IRGSP Working Group, composed of a representative from each participating nation, formulates IRGSP policies and finishing standards. The recent interim IRGSP meeting at Clemson University (September 19 and 20, 2000) in South Carolina was the largest rice genome meeting to date and was attended by more than 70 scientists and administrators from Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Korea, China, India, Brazil, France, Canada, and the United States. 

Rice genome sequencing is being conducted along the same lines as numerous other large-scale genome sequencing projects. Large insert genomic libraries, used as the primary sequencing templates, are constructed in bacterial artificial chromosomes (BACs) or P1-derived artificial chromosomes (PACs). Sequencing of the rice genome is being performed mainly from genomic BAC or PAC libraries created from the Nipponbare variety, which was chosen as the common template throughout the IRGSP.

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