The draft genome of Tibetan hulless barley reveals adaptive patterns to the high stressful Tibetan Plateau

Xingquan Zenga, Hai Long, Zhuo Wang, Shancen Zhao, Yawei Tang, Zhiyong Huang, Yulin Wang, Qijun Xu, Likai Mao, Guangbing Deng, Xiaoming Yao, Xiangfeng Li, Lijun Bai, Hongjun Yuan, Zhifen Pan, Renjian Liu, Xin Chen, Qi Mei WangMu, Ming Chen, Lili YuJunjun Liang, Da Wa DunZhu, Yuan Zheng, Shuiyang Yu, Zha Xi LuoBu, Xuanmin Guang, Jiang Li, Cao Deng, Wushu Hu, Chunhai Chen, Xiong Nu TaBa, Liyun Gao, Xiaodan Lv, Yuval Ben Abu, Xiaodong Fang, Eviatar Nevo, Maoqun Yu, Jun Wang, Nyima Tashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Tibetan hulless barley (Hordeum vulgare L. var. nudum), also called "Qingke" in Chinese and "Ne" in Tibetan, is the staple food for Tibetans and an important livestock feed in the Tibetan Plateau. The diploid nature and adaptation to diverse environments of the highland give it unique resources for genetic research and crop improvement. Here we produced a 3.89-Gb draft assembly of Tibetan hulless barley with 36,151 predicted protein-coding genes. Comparative analyses revealed the divergence times and synteny between barley and other representative Poaceae genomes. The expansion of the gene family related to stress responses was found in Tibetan hulless barley. Resequencing of 10 barley accessions uncovered high levels of genetic variation in Tibetan wild barley and genetic divergence between Tibetan and non-Tibetan barley genomes. Selective sweep analyses demonstrate adaptive correlations of genes under selection with extensive environmental variables. Our results not only construct a genomic framework for crop improvement but also provide evolutionary insights of highland adaptation of Tibetan hulless barley.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1095-1100
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number4
StatePublished - 27 Jan 2015


  • Adaptation
  • Genetic diversity
  • Selective sweep
  • Tibetan hulless barley
  • Triticeae evolution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'The draft genome of Tibetan hulless barley reveals adaptive patterns to the high stressful Tibetan Plateau'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this