WUHAN — Chinese scientists have completed the genome sequencing of grass carp and produced the world’s first whole genome map for the fish, with their research results published in the Nature Genetics journal on May 4.
The genome sequencing was a three-year collaborative project between the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ (CAS) Institute of Hydrobiology and National Center of Gene Research, and Sun Yat-sen University.
A genome is the full complement of an organism’s DNA; complex molecules that direct the formation and function of all living organisms. The size of an organism’s genome is measured by the number of bases it contains — base pairs being the building blocks of DNA.
“The research has helped us to understand the evolutionary history of grass carp, and it’s of great importance to the breeding of stronger species in the future,” said Wang Yaping, the project’s lead scientist and a researcher with Institute of Hydrobiology.
The research of grass carp will also help understanding of human diseases, since grass carp can carry the same bacterial and viral diseases as humans, Wang added.
Grass carp make up 16 percent of the world’s cultured fish, and China is the world’s largest grass carp culturing country.