Gene Names

In your issue of March 30, 1998, Paul Smaglik writes of a Tower of Babel generated by multiple names assigned to the same protein or gene names (P. Smaglik, The Scientist, 12[7]:1, March 30, 1998). The situation for plant genes is both worse and better than indicated in the article. Molecular genetics of animal systems is focused on a few species, principally human, mouse, Drosophila, and the worm. The isolation of genes and proteins from plants, in contrast, is routinely reported from dozen

Price
Jun 21, 1998

In your issue of March 30, 1998, Paul Smaglik writes of a Tower of Babel generated by multiple names assigned to the same protein or gene names (P. Smaglik, The Scientist, 12[7]:1, March 30, 1998). The situation for plant genes is both worse and better than indicated in the article.

Molecular genetics of animal systems is focused on a few species, principally human, mouse, Drosophila, and the worm. The isolation of genes and proteins from plants, in contrast, is routinely reported from dozens of species: arabidopsis, maize, rice, barley, wheat, tobacco, petunia, tomato, pea, bean, spinach. ... And let's not forget algae: Euglena, Chlamydomonas, Cyanophora, etc. It is not that plant types are hooked on seed catalogs; there were and are compelling scientific, historic, and agricultural reasons for selecting different plants for investigation. A consequence is that no single species dominates. But another consequence of this diversity is...

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