By Syed Akbar
Hyderabad: Hyderabad played a crucial role in the decoding of
the biological secrets of tomato.
The international conference on tomato genome project, held in
November 2006 in Hyderabad, laid down the path for the successful
research on tomato genome. Scientists from different countries had
then descended on Hyderabad to chalk out the scientific path to study
and sequence the genome of tomato. The University of Hyderabad, which
hosted the conference, also played a key role in the sequence of
tomato genome by providing vital clues to the three other national
institutes involved in the project from the Indian side.
The HCU is involved in the in several areas of tomato research
including sequencing of its chromosome No. 5, and functional genomics
activities related to “tilling”, disease resistance, and fruit
ripening. Tilling (Targeting Induced Local lesions IN Genomes)
involves reverse genetics methods to improve the genetic make-up of
The talks presented at the Hyderabad conference helped to outline and
address several emerging issues. Moreover, the University of Hyderabad
has a vibrant group on tomato functional genomics, which is also
involved in mutagenesis and proteomics.
It also employs reverse genetics to isolate tomato mutants delayed in
ripening, improve the content of lycopene and folate content in tomato
and analyse light and hormonal signal transduction pathways.
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