Functional genomics has recently become a logistical rather than a theoretical problem in plant molecular biology for one simple reason—an immense wealth of data describing the nucleotide sequences of plant and animal genomes has become available and is continuing to accrue at an exponential rate. This has led to the development of a variety of methods under the general heading of functional genomics through which this ocean of information can be charted and given biological meaning with regard to the significance of individual nucleotide sequences. In order to assess the biological impact of individual genes within the context of a living organism, one might wish to investigate mutations or lesions in the gene of choice. Unfortunately, mutated lines are normally derived following selection based on an observation of phenotype, which then leads to an investigation of the molecular genetic changes underpinning the phenotypic changes observed. This forward genetic approach is very powerful, but does not lend itself readily to the investigation of genes without a known function (such as the analysis of theoretically predicted transcripts derived from genome sequencing projects).
KeywordsMaize Polysaccharide Phenyl Germinate Paraffin
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