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Royal Bengal tiger genome sequenced

Royal Bengal tiger genome sequenced

For the first time, the genome of the Royal Bengal tiger, an endangered big cat, has been sequenced as part of plans to generate a high-quality draft genome sequence of the animal. Although endangered and threatened by various extinction risks, this tiger subspecies is the most populous one with the highest genetic diversity and the strongest chance of survival in the wild.

Which organization did it?

Genome sequencing and identification of genome variants in Bengal tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) were carried out by scientists from the Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology (CSIR-CCMB) and a Hyderabad-based private company.

What is genome sequencing?

Sequencing a gene is like reading a book one letter at a time to look for any spelling mistakes. To carry out this book analogy, whole genome sequencing (WGS) is the equivalent of running spellcheck on every volume in a library.

Genome data provides an insight into the genetic differences at individual level — ranging from single nucleotide variations to large structural variants. It also provides a better understanding of how the gene variants play a role in adaptation to the environment and disease susceptibility.

DNA and Genome 

DNA resembles a long, twisty ladder formed by two strands of genetic material that connect to create what’s called a “double helix.” Each rung of the ladder joins together a pair of molecules called nucleotides: adenine (A), thymine (T), cytosine (C) and guanine (G). A always teams up with T, and C always pairs with G. Slight variations in the order of these pairs are what make a person unique. (The vast majority of your genome is identical to the guy sitting next to you at Starbucks.) Some variations cause disease, and some don’t.

Genes, which are made up of DNA, are linked together in large chains called chromosomes.

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