"This report is an annual update from the Interagency Working Group (IWG) on Plant Genomes on activities of the National Plant Genome Initiative (NPGI). This year, it includes highlights that illustrate activities supported and coordinated by the NPGI member agencies. Plant genomics research in the United States continues to advance the frontiers of plant biology, addressing fundamental biological questions using the tools, resources and conceptual framework of genomics. Exciting new discoveries over the past year include the finding that genetic variants of tropical corn (maize) have novel sugar composition with potential uses for biofuel production. Outcomes from research supported under the NPGI are also providing important inputs for improved agricultural practices in peanut breeding, fruit tree cultivar development, as well as breeding of disease resistant and salt tolerant plants. Technological advances made in the past year include the development of innovative technology to enable automated, high-throughput analysis of plant growth and development and a novel X-ray system to analyze root development. Continued advances in both biological discovery as well as technology development will be important as reliance on plants increases for materials, energy and fuels. Plants will continue to serve as a key resource as we address the challenges of increasing population, decreasing agricultural land area, and the impacts of climate change. U.S. scientists involved in plant genomics research continue to cooperate nationally and internationally."
National Science and Technology Council: http://www.ostp.gov/cs/nstc