An international team of researchers has assembled the first genome of the
field pea, providing insight into how Mendel's original genetic model
evolved and help future improvements of the crop. The study, published in
Nature Genetics, has important implications for global nutrition and
sustainability of crops. Pea is the second most important grain legume in
the world after the common bean and is an important green vegetable.
According to Professors David Edwards and Jacqueline Batley from The
University of Western Australia's School of Biological Sciences and
Institute of Agriculture, the field pea had a much larger and more complex
genome compared to other legumes. The sequencing project reveals the pea
genome assembly spans 3.92 Gb, representing 88% of the estimated pea genome
size of about 4.45 Gb.
Professor Batley said their research built on pioneering concepts of
inheritance developed by Gregor Mendel. "With the pea genome sequenced, we
can now start to understand the basis for the variation which has evolved,"