First peanut genome sequenced
In the U.S. peanuts are a major row crop throughout the South and Southeast. While they are a major economic driver for the U.S. economy, the legume is also crucial to the diets and livelihoods of millions of small farmers in Asia and Africa, many of whom are women.
Apart from being a rich source of oil (44 percent to 55 percent), protein (20 percent to 50 percent) and carbohydrates (10 percent to 20 percent), peanut seeds are an important nutritional source of niacin, folate, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, iron, riboflavin, thiamine and vitamin E.
"While the sequencing of the peanut can be seen as a great leap forward in plant genetics and genomics, it also has the potential to be a large step forward for stabilizing agriculture in developing countries," said Dave Hoisington, program director for the U.S. Agency for International Development Feed the Future Peanut and Mycotoxin Innovation Lab, which is hosted at UGA.
"With the release of the peanut genome sequence, researchers will now have much better tools available to accelerate the development of new peanut varieties with improved yields and better nutrition," he said.
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