Bioenergy Grass Genomics

C4 grasses are among the most productive biomass plants and are exceptional candidates for bioenergy & biorefinary feedstocks. The tribe Andropogoneae contains the domesticated crops maize, sorghum, and sugarcane, which are already being used for first generation ethanol production, and the undomesticated species Miscanthus and switchgrass which are being advanced as cellulosic ethanol crops. To develop these species into competitive energy crops, genomic and genetic tools must be employed to elucidate the structure and function of their genomes and facilitate targeted breeding. The complexity of most C4 grass genomes and the high ploidy levels in some species are significant challenges that hinder genetic analyses. Complete genome sequences are now available for sorghum and maize, and first genetic maps have been established for Miscanthus. In addition, a new C4 model crop is emerging. These data can be used to understand the more complex genomes via comparative genomics studies. Many cellulosic crops are perennial, and key traits can take several years to observe. The development of genomic tools will significantly accelerate the breeding of sustainable bioenergy crops within a meaningful timeframe.
Date: Saturday, January 10, 2015
Time: 4:00 PM-6:10 PM
Room: Pacific Salon 2
Kerrie Farrar and Kankshita Swaminathan
4:00 PM
Update on Assembly and Functionality of the Miscanthus Genome Sequence
Stephen P. Moose, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

4:20 PM
Constructing a Comprehensive Picture of the Miscanthus Cell Wall to Advance Its Deconstruction
Ricardo da Costa, Aberystwyth University; Sivakumar Pattathil, CCRC - University of Georgia; Utku Avci, CCRC - University of Georgia; Scott J Lee, Biology Department, University of Massachusetts; Gordon G. Allison, Aberystwyth University; Samuel P Hazen, Biology Department, University of Massachusetts; Ana Winters, Aberystwyth University; Michael G. Hahn, CCRC - University of Georgia; Maurice Bosch, Aberystwyth University

5:00 PM
Genomics and Genetics of Switchgrass Cell Wall Quality
Laura Bartley, University of Oklahoma; Kangmei Zhao, University of Oklahoma; Chengcheng Zhang, Univestiy of Oklahoma; Sandra Thibivilliers, University of Oklahoma; Aruna Nandety, Univestiy of Oklahoma; Ananta Achayra, University of Georgia; Desalegn Serba, Noble Foundation; Xuesong Li, Oklahoma State University; E. Charles Brummer, University of California, Davis; Nicholas Santoro, DOE GLBRC,Michigan State University; Malay C. Saha, The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation; Lan Zhu, Oklahoma State University

5:20 PM
5:40 PM
Comparative Genomics of Bioenergy Grasses
Daniel S. Rokhsar, DOE Joint Genome Institute

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