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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Genetic Improvement of Maize with Enhanced Resistance to Aflatoxin and Insects

Location: Corn Host Plant Resistance Research

Title: Omics for the future of wood protection

Authors
item Tang, Juliet
item Diehl, Susan -

Submitted to: Book Chapter
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: September 13, 2013
Publication Date: June 10, 2014
Citation: Tang, J.D., Diehl, S. 2014. Omics for the future of wood protection. 60-79. In Schultz, T., et al. (ed.) Deterioration and Protection of Sustainable Biomaterials, Oxford University Press. 1158 pp.

Interpretive Summary: With a global focus on climate change, there is a strong demand for new sustainable products, applications, and biotechnological advances. The "omics" approach of studying biology is a discovery-driven method that has the promise of delivering solutions to these overarching problems. It gives scientists the ability to achieve a systems-level understanding of life that begins with identifying the genome or all the genes in an organism. New fields, however, bring new jargon and new analytical methods that make it difficult to appreciate the significance of the science. Our goal in this review was to present an introduction to some of the most important omics approaches that have been used to gain insight into how fungi convert wood into energy and why certain fungi are metal-tolerant. The expectation is that once genes relevant to industrial application are identified, biotechnological methods can then be used to develop novel solutions that will advance wood protection and utilization.

Technical Abstract: With a global focus on the conversion of biomass into products, fuels, and energy as well as the sustainability of forests, carbon cycling, and environmental stewardship, there is a strong demand and need for information that will lead to new sustainable products, applications and biotechnological advances. The omics approach is a discovery-driven method of studying biology that has the promise of delivering solutions to these overarching problems. It gives scientists the ability to achieve a systems understanding of life that begins with identifying the genome or the entire collection of genes in an organism. The pivotal technology that enabled this revolutionary approach is next generation DNA sequencing. New fields, however, bring new jargon and new analytical methods that make it difficult to appreciate the technology or the significance of the science. Our goal was to present an introduction to some of the most important omics approaches that have been used to gain insight into how wood decay fungi convert lignocellulose into energy and why certain species are metal-tolerant. The expectation is that once genes relevant to industrial application are identified, biotechnological methods can then be used to develop novel solutions that advance wood protection.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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