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Arabidopsis thaliana

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Arabidopsis thaliana
Arabidopsis thaliana ( thale cress, mouse-ear cress or arabidopsis) is a small flowering plant native to Eurasia. A. thaliana is edible by humans and, as with other mustard greens, is used in salads or sautéed, like many species in the Brassicacea. A. thaliana is considered a weed; it is found by roadsides and in disturbed lands. A winter annual with a relatively short life cycle, Arabidopsis is a popular model organism in plant biology and genetics. For a complex multicellular eukaryote, Arabidopsis thaliana has a relatively small genome of approximately 135 megabase pairs (Mbp). It was long thought to have the smallest genome of all flowering plants, but the smallest flowering plants' genomes are now considered to belong to plants in the genus Genlisea, order Lamiales, with Genlisea tuberosa, a carnivorous plant, showing a genome size of approximately 61 Mbp. Arabidopsis thaliana was the first plant to have its genome sequenced, and is a popular tool for understanding the molecular biology of many plant traits, including flower development and light sensing.

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WordNet 2.0 Dictionary

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Arabidopsis thaliana

Noun
1. a small invasive self-pollinating weed with small white flowers; much studied by plant geneticists; the first higher plant whose complete genome sequence was described
(synonym) mouse-ear cress
(hypernym) cress, cress plant


Common Terms in Evolutionary Biology and Genetics Dictionary

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Arabidopsis thaliana
A small member of the mustard family (kitchen cress). It has a very small genome (130-140 Mbp), five chromosomes and contains almost no repetitive DNA. Its genome will be completely sequenced by the end of 2000. It is a plant model system of choice because of the additional advantages of short generation time (about five weeks), high seed production (up to 40,000 seeds per plant) and natural self-pollination (as opposed to natural cross-pollination in maize). It has five small chromosomes. Link to Arabidopsis website.


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