UPDATE — Vertebrate Genomes Project Co-Leader Erich Jarvis will use BioNano to Generate Thousands of Reference Genomes


“Dr. Jarvis’s work and scientific vision for genomics projects is fundamental to advancing how we understand the diversity of life and how genome variation relates to human health and disease,” said Erik Holmlin, Ph.D., CEO of BioNano Genomics. “The scope of the Vertebrae Genomes Project has impressed us and we look forward to our Irys® System contributing to its success in generating complete genome maps of the highest quality for all vertebrate species. The project reflects validation from published research and recognition by the genomics community that optical mapping using BioNano’s Irys® System makes an influential difference in identifying structural variations in human and animal genomes.”

About G10K and B10K Vertebrate Genomes Project Sequencing Labs

The ongoing G10K project aims to sequence the genomes of 10,000 vertebrate species, representing at least one species per vertebrate genus, and the ongoing B10K project aims to sequence the genomes of all 10,500 bird species on Earth. Dr. Jarvis is one of the co-leaders of G10K, along with Steve O’Brien of the Dobzhansky Center for Genome Bioinformatics, David Haussler and Beth Shapiro of the UCSC Genome Institute, and Oliver Ryder of UC San Diego. He is also one of the co-founders of the B10K project, along with Guojie Zhang affiliated at BGI in China and Denmark, and Thomas Gilbert of the University of Copenhagen in Denmark. Dr. Jarvis will set up an operational hub for these projects, to be located at the Rockefeller University and possibly the New York Genome Center (NYGC), where BioNano and PacBio platforms will reside.

This hub will involve working with the world’s leading experts and institutions in genomics, including the National Center for Biotechnology (NCBI) in the U.S., ENSEMBL and the Sanger Institute in the UK, and BGI in China. They will receive vertebrate DNA samples from participating investigators across the world. Over the next three years, they hope to generate high quality chromosomal-level genome assemblies of at least 1,000 species representing each of the 1,000 vertebrate taxonomic families. With these 1,000 species, the consortia plan to conduct a series of focused studies, including studies on complex behavioral and brain traits, a genome-scale vertebrate family-level tree, and unmatched analytical power for detecting selection on every base in the human genome, all of which will impact studies on health and disease. All genomes produced through the G10K and B10K projects will be publicly available.