Start Date: Sep 01, 2008
End Date: Aug 31, 2013
Ecological factors have an impact on invasiveness of perennial weeds of the Northern plains; for example, Canada thistle and leafy spurge. These ecological factors cause changes in gene expression that are regulated by cis-acting elements. Advances in 454 sequencing technology now make it uniquely suited for the rapid and efficient quantification of both 1) gene expression, and 2) the identification of the cis-acting elements that control gene expression. Quantification of gene expression will be accomplished by 454 sequencing of biological samples collected from various ecological settings. This information will be analyzed and compared to obtain a dataset of genes linked to invasive traits. Further, 454 sequencing will be used to characterize genomic DNA to identify the specific cis-acting elements regulating the genes from our dataset.