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Plant genomics in Africa: present and prospects

Ghazal, H. and Adam, Yagoub and Azami, Abdellah Idrissi and Sehli, Sofia and Nyarko, Hannah N. and Chaouni, Bouchra and Olasehinde, G. I and Isewon, Itunuoluwa and Adebiyi, Marion O. and Ajani, Olayinka O. and Matovu, Enock and Obembe, Olawole O. and Ajamma, Yvonne U and Kuzamun, Gaston and Salifu, S. P. and Kayondo, J. K. and Benkahla, A. and Adebiyi, E. F. (2021) Plant genomics in Africa: present and prospects. The Plant Journal, 107. pp. 21-36.

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Plants are the world’s most consumed goods. They are of high economic value and bring many health benefits. In most countries in Africa, the supply and quality of food will rise to meet the growing population’s increasing demand. Genomics and other biotechnology tools offer the opportunity to improve subsistence crops and medicinal herbs in the continent. Significant advances have been made in plant genomics, which have enhanced our knowledge of the molecular processes underlying both plant quality and yield. The sequencing of complex genomes of African plant species, facilitated by the continuously evolving nextgeneration sequencing technologies and advanced bioinformatics approaches, has provided new opportunities for crop improvement. This review summarizes the achievements of genome sequencing projects of endemic African plants in the last two decades. We also present perspectives and challenges for future plant genomic studies that will accelerate important plant breeding programs for African communities. These challenges include a lack of basic facilities, a lack of sequencing and bioinformatics facilities, and a lack of skills to design genomics studies. However, it is imperative to state that African countries have become key players in the plant genome revolution and genome derived-biotechnology. Therefore, African governments should invest in public plant genomics research and applications, establish bioinformatics platforms and training programs, and stimulate university and industry partnerships to fully deploy plant genomics, particularly in the fields of agriculture and medicine.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: plant genomics, Africa, bioinformatics, biodiversity, crop improvement, medicinal plant.
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Q Science > QH Natural history
Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Engineering, Science and Mathematics > School of Electronics and Computer Science
Faculty of Medicine, Health and Life Sciences > School of Biological Sciences
Depositing User: Mrs Patricia Nwokealisi
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2021 13:13
Last Modified: 06 Aug 2021 13:13

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