Title: "Constructing Meaning from Nothing: Next-Generation Genetics"
Speaker: Brian Dilkes; Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, Purdue University

Place: Lilly (LILY) Hall G126
Date: November 11, 2014; Tuesday
Time: 4:30pm


Every technical advance in biology is ushered in with an irrational exuberance for the power of a new machine to overcome previous limitations. Without fail, after the initial excitement subsides, the utility of the advance is only achieved after incorporating the new technology into sensible experimental designs. I have been pioneering the application of genomics for forward genetics. We began in non-model wild species, but quickly realized that our experimental designs would substantially enhance the utility of sequencing for gene function discovery in any organism. The value of replication in sequencing experiments will be illustrated using data from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation project on forward and reverse genetics in Sorghum. This has involved determining the molecular cause of multiple sorghum mutants by forward genetics (the Krothapalli et alia publication is one of these) and generated whole-genome sequencing data and allele calls from 600 mutants of sorghum. This approach is broadly applicable, and we are making progress in model mammals, model plants, and crops by taking the "everything old is new again" approach to experimental designs for sequencing

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