Researchers have sequenced genome of Ragi/Finger Millet (Eleusine coracana (L.) Gaertn.)
Basically Finger millet (Eleusine coracana (L.) Gaertn.) is an important staple food crop widely grown in Africa and South Asia. Among the millets, finger millet has a high amount of calcium, methionine, tryptophan, fiber, and sulfur-containing amino acids.
- In addition, it has C4 photosynthetic carbon assimilation mechanism, which helps to utilize water and nitrogen efficiently under hot and arid conditions without severely affecting yield.
- Therefore, development and utilization of genomic resources for genetic improvement of this crop is immensely useful.
Methods Used in This Research:
Genome size estimation of finger millet and wild species
Nucleic acid isolation
Paired-end, mate pair library preparation and sequencing
DNA-seq data pre-processing and de novo genome assembly
Gene prediction and functional annotation
Gene families, phylogenetic analysis and mining of transcription factors
Analysis of calcium transporter, disease resistant and C4 pathway genes
RNA-seq library preparation and data pre-processing
Transcriptome assembly, differential gene analysis and functional annotation
Validation of drought responsive genes through qRT-PCR
Simple and complex repeat prediction
Primer designing for SSRs and electronic PCR
Oligo synthesis and genotyping of finger millet accessions
Experimental results from whole genome sequencing and assembling process of ML-365 finger millet cultivar yielded 1196 Mb covering approximately 82% of total estimated genome size. Genome analysis showed the presence of 85,243 genes and one-half of the genome is repetitive in nature.
- The finger millet genome was found to have higher colinearity with foxtail millet and rice as compared to other Poaceae species. Mining of simple sequence repeats (SSRs) yielded an abundance of SSRs within the finger millet genome.
- Functional annotation and mining of transcription factors revealed finger millet genome harbors a large number of drought tolerance related genes.
- Transcriptome analysis of low moisture stress and non-stress samples revealed the identification of several drought-induced candidate genes, which could be used in drought tolerance breeding.
4. DNA-seq data pre-processing and de novo genome assembly
This genome sequencing effort will strengthen plant breeders for allele discovery, genetic mapping, and identification of candidate genes for agronomically important traits. Availability of genomic resources of finger millet will enhance the novel breeding possibilities to address potential challenges of finger millet improvement.