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DNA Res. 2017 Feb 1;24(1):51-58. doi: 10.1093/dnares/dsw047.

Draft genome sequence of bitter gourd (Momordica charantia), a vegetable and medicinal plant in tropical and subtropical regions.

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Okinawa Prefectural Agricultural Research Center, Itoman, Okinawa 901-0336, Japan.
Iwate Biotechnology Research Center, Kitakami, Iwate 024-0003, Japan.
Shinshu university, Ueda, Nagano 386-8567, Japan.


Bitter gourd (Momordica charantia) is an important vegetable and medicinal plant in tropical and subtropical regions globally. In this study, the draft genome sequence of a monoecious bitter gourd inbred line, OHB3-1, was analyzed. Through Illumina sequencing and de novo assembly, scaffolds of 285.5 Mb in length were generated, corresponding to ∼84% of the estimated genome size of bitter gourd (339 Mb). In this draft genome sequence, 45,859 protein-coding gene loci were identified, and transposable elements accounted for 15.3% of the whole genome. According to synteny mapping and phylogenetic analysis of conserved genes, bitter gourd was more related to watermelon (Citrullus lanatus) than to cucumber (Cucumis sativus) or melon (C. melo). Using RAD-seq analysis, 1507 marker loci were genotyped in an F2 progeny of two bitter gourd lines, resulting in an improved linkage map, comprising 11 linkage groups. By anchoring RAD tag markers, 255 scaffolds were assigned to the linkage map. Comparative analysis of genome sequences and predicted genes determined that putative trypsin-inhibitor and ribosome-inactivating genes were distinctive in the bitter gourd genome. These genes could characterize the bitter gourd as a medicinal plant.


Cucurbitaceae; Momordica charantia; bitter gourd; de novo sequencing; draft genome

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