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The structure, function, evolution, and mapping of genomes

The Earth BioGenome Project, (EBP), a moonshot for biology, aims to sequence, catalog and characterize the genomes of the named  ~1.7 million living eukaryotic species on Earth. By sequencing all life, it creates a foundation for biology for the future of life and equal benefit of all people. Our ability to meet this ambitious mission depends on creating a future of genomics that is purposeful and intentional in inclusion of all for an equitable future in biodiversity genomics. Sadye is the inaugural chair of the Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion committee with Dr. Marcela Uliano-Silva. She is also part of the Executive Working Group and the Communications and Public Affairs committee and a co-author of the flagship paper (PNAS 2022) The Earth BioGenome Project 2020: Starting the Clock  (read the press release here, and see our current progress here). Sadye helped lead the coordination of the 2018 and 2019 VGP-EBP (formally known as G10K) Annual conferences as well as the 2020 and 2021 Biodiversity Genomics Meeting, which continued the tradition of the VGP-EBP meeting.

Vertebrate Genomes Project

The Vertebrate Genomes Project (VGP) intends to address fundamental questions in biology and disease, identify species most genetically at risk for extinction, and preserve genetic information of life for vertebrates, or animals with backbones: mammals, amphibians, birds, reptiles, and fishes. Specifically, the VGP is generating high-quality reference genome assemblies for all living ~71,000 vertebrate species to help biologists and conservations create new sets of tools to understand how genes contribute to the evolution and survival of these species. All data are publicly available on Genome Ark (see our current progress here). The discoveries from the first five years of this project are reported in a special issue of Nature (2021); Sadye is a co-author on the flagship paper. Her specific research efforts with the VGP focus on the sixth mass extinction and conservation. She also leads science communication efforts for the VGP.

With approximately one fifth of the ~200,000 European species at risk of extinction, the European Reference Genome Atlas (ERGA) initiative is a pan-European scientific response to current threats to biodiversity. In 2020, the members of ERGA presented a public position paper, which advocates for the importance of generating high-quality reference genome sequences for key European species. The paper was signed by almost 600 scientists and presented to the European Commission's Directorate-General for Research and Innovation. It led to the formal constitution of the ERGA Consortium in early 2021 (see our current progress here). Sadye is a founding member, the current US Council Representative with Dr. Andrea Bonisoli-Alquati, and a member of the ELSI committee. She is a co-author of the flagship paper (Trends in Ecology & Evolution 2022). 

The African BioGenome Project (AfricaBP) is an initiative for the future of biological diversity in Africa. As a community network to in Africa, The goal of this project is to generate whole genome sequencing of indigenous, endemic and endangered species and economically important crop and livestock species and their wild relatives to support sustainable agricultural practices and to inform biodiversity conservation and development policy in Africa. Sadye is a co-author on the flagship paper (Nature 2022) (read the press release here).

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