Evolution, biodiversity and bioresource collection

Research in the field of molecular evolution are impossible without the use of bioinformatics approaches due to the large number of sequenced genomes. An example of the successful application of such approachs is the recent discovery of a new class of genes in the genomes of multicellular and unicellular eukaryotes that encode the long non-coding RNA (dsRNA). The number of such genes in the tens of thousands, but the study of dsRNA genes with traditional methods of molecular biology is unrealistic. Definition of dsRNA gene depends on the level of conservatism (molecular evolution) and the level of expression of these genes, determined using a new-generation sequencing methods of RNA-seq. Even the primary storage and analysis of this information requires the combined use of the methods of molecular evolution, population genetics and bioinformatics.

Genetic erosion caused by modern methods of cultivation of plants, has narrowed the genetic diversity of many cultures, including key food crops – wheat, barley, potatoes. Without expanding the genetic diversity by attracting additional sources of novel genes it is not possible to create new varieties that meet the modern needs of the population, and thus the basic food safety requirements. To increase the genetic diversity, relatives of cultivated species – wild and cultivated species are used.  This session will also elucidate current approaches for the conservation, augmentation and evaluation of genetic resources with a view to identifying potential donors in their carrying variants of genes valuable for breeding staple food crops.