Ginormous Genome

Tom Matheson Ginormous GenomeTo better understand the amazing swarming biology of Desert Locusts, Schistocerca gregaria, we have been working with colleagues in Belgium to sequence the animal’s huge genome. Our analysis reveals that it consists of 8,517,668,771 base pairs (8.5 giga-base-pairs), making it one of the largest animal genomes yet sequenced (the human genome is a measly 3.2 gbp in comparison). Here one of our locusts is standing in front of a truly huge and colourful molecular model of DNA – although this is not quite what we mean by ‘a ginormous genome'!‚Äč