Design and synthesis of a minimal bacterial genome

Absolutely loving this paper! Some highlights: "During the process of genome minimization, there is a trade-off between genome size and growth rate. JCVI-syn3.0 is a working approximation of a minimal cellular genome, a compromise between small genome size and a workable growth rate for an experimental organism. [...] To obtain a viable genome, avoid deleting pairs of redundant genes for essential functions. [...] Unexpectedly, it also contains 149 genes with unknown biological functions. JCVI-syn3.0 is a versatile platform for investigating the core functions of life and for exploring whole-genome design."

"A goal in biology is to understand the molecular and biological function of every gene in a cell. One way to approach this is to build a minimal genome that includes only the genes essential for life. In 2010, a 1079-kb genome based on the genome of Mycoplasma mycoides (JCV-syn1.0) was chemically synthesized and supported cell growth when transplanted into cytoplasm. Hutchison III et al. used a design, build, and test cycle to reduce this genome to 531 kb (473 genes). The resulting JCV-syn3.0 retains genes involved in key processes such as transcription and translation, but also contains 149 genes of unknown function." Full paper @ Design and synthesis of a minimal bacterial genome | Science

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