DATABASES: Blueprint of a Plant

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Science  15 Dec 2000:
Vol. 290, Issue 5499, pp. 2027
DOI: 10.1126/science.290.5499.2027c

This week marks a milestone in plant biology: the complete sequencing of a plant genome, a small flowering weed known as Arabidopsis thaliana (see p. 2105). The plant's home range on the Web is The Arabidopsis Information Resource (TAIR), a site built to archive all 117 million bases sequenced by a collaboration of labs around the world. The latest annotation data were still being loaded as Science went to press, but within a couple of weeks the site will be “the launchpad” for the genome, says site director Sue Rhee of the Carnegie Institution of Washington at Stanford University. The database can be searched by genetic markers, clones, and people, among other options. A mapper tool compares the sequence with genetic and physical maps. Other TAIR offerings include meeting and job postings. Or follow outside links to analyze proteins, order seeds, or read the rules for naming a gene.

Biologists who want to know more about Arabidopsis can check out the December issue of Plant Physiology. Free online, this special issue is devoted to essays, reviews, and research about the promise of the genome.

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