The genomes of forest trees: new frontiers of forest biology
16 – 17 June 2015
Welcome and invitation
On behalf of the New Phytologist Trust and symposium organisers I am pleased to invite you to participate in a symposium entitled ‘The genomes of forest trees - new frontiers of forest biology’ to be held at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, Boston, MA, USA, 16 – 17 June 2015.
We look forward to welcoming you in Boston.
Deputy Managing Editor, New Phytologist
New genomic technologies are bringing previously intractable but fascinating aspects of forest tree biology to the forefront of plant biology. Completed and ongoing sequencing projects are providing extensive expressed gene and even full genome sequence resources available for tree species from diverse taxa. At the same time, creative applications of genomic and sequencing technologies are producing tools capable of probing the fundamental processes responsible for woody growth and other unique biological processes in trees. Among the most promising but largely unexplored areas of research is the use of comparative evolutionary genomics approaches that can simultaneously illuminate key regulatory processes and how they have evolved over macro- and micro-evolutionary history. For example, the evolutionary innovations leading to the vast array of woody growth forms in extant plants are almost entirely unknown at the genetic level, but could soon be elucidated using comparative genomics approaches.
We will bring together researchers who are exploring the frontiers of tree evolution, ecology, and development using next generation sequencing, genomics, and systems biology approaches. Together, we hope to inspire new ideas for collaborative research that will bring together currently disjoint research communities, and usher in a new era of genome-based forest biology. Ultimately, the approaches and insights from genome-based forest biology will inform us how to address problems ranging from forest conservation during climate change to tailoring of tree-based biofuels feedstocks.
The symposium will take place over two days at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, Boston, MA, USA. There will be dedicated time for discussions, posters, selected poster talks, a conference dinner and a tour of the Arboretum’s collections.
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