Suaeda aralocaspica, an annual halophyte, distributes in central Asia. In China, S. aralocaspica is found mainly in the cold desert of the southern Junggar Basin, Xinjiang. This species performs complete C4 photosynthesis within individual cells (SCC4). SCC4 plants have potential value in engineering higher photosynthetic efficiencies in agriculturally important C3 species. However, there is no reported sequenced SCC4 plant genome. This limits our understanding of the mechanisms involved in SCC4 photosynthesis and the possible utilization.
Tian Changyan, researcher of Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, lead his team successfully completed the genome sequencing, assembly, quality evaluation and function annotations of S. aralocaspica
Using Illumina and Pacific Biosciences sequencing platforms, the team generated 202 Gb of clean genomic DNA sequences having a 433-fold coverage based on the 467 Mb estimated genome size of S. aralocaspica. The final genome assembly was 452 Mb, consisting of 4,033 scaffolds, with a scaffold N50 length of 1.83 Mb. The team annotated 29,604 protein-coding genes using Evidence Modeler based on the gene information from ab initio predictions, homology levels with known genes, and RNA sequencing–based transcriptome evidence. The team also annotated noncoding genes, including 1,651 long noncoding RNAs, 21 microRNAs, 382 transfer RNAs, 88 small nuclear RNAs, and 325 ribosomal RNAs. A complete (circular with no gaps) chloroplast genome of S. aralocaspica 146,654 bp in length was also assembled. Knowledge of the genome of S. aralocaspica should increase our understanding of the evolution of SCC4 photosynthesis and contribute to the engineering of C4 photosynthesis into economically important C3 crops.
The manuscript entitled "A draft genome assembly of halophyte Suaeda aralocaspica, a plant that performs C4 photosynthesis within individual cells" was published in GigaScience.
Article link: https://academic.oup.com/gigascience/article/8/9/giz116/5568370?searchresult=1
Contact: LIU Jie, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography