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Genome Res. 2005 Dec;15(12):1603-10.

Insights on biology and evolution from microbial genome sequencing.

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  • The Institute for Genomic Research, Rockville, Maryland 20850, USA. cmfraser@tigr.org


No field of research has embraced and applied genomic technology more than the field of microbiology. Comparative analysis of nearly 300 microbial species has demonstrated that the microbial genome is a dynamic entity shaped by multiple forces. Microbial genomics has provided a foundation for a broad range of applications, from understanding basic biological processes, host-pathogen interactions, and protein-protein interactions, to discovering DNA variations that can be used in genotyping or forensic analyses, the design of novel antimicrobial compounds and vaccines, and the engineering of microbes for industrial applications. Most recently, metagenomics approaches are allowing us to begin to probe complex microbial communities for the first time, and they hold great promise in helping to unravel the relationships between microbial species.

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