top of page

10 000 Eucalyptus Genomes Initiative (10KEGI)


Fast-growing woody plant species from the sister genera Eucalyptus, Corymbia and Angophora, jointly known as the "eucalypts", include some of the most carbon-dense vegetation on earth and hold great promise for carbon drawdown through restoration and plantation forestry. Eucalypt species and hybrids also constitute the most widely planted hardwood crop globally (>20 mha) serving as renewable biomass feedstocks for timber, pulp, paper, textiles, food additives, pharmaceuticals and a wide range of other lignocellulosic products. They also have some of the most diverse secondary metabolism of all plants and therefore offer a rich collection of genes and pathways for novel bioproduct development. 

Our vision for 10KEGI is to stimulate genome analysis of all 980+ recognized eucalypt species and create population-level genome resources for key eucalypt species.  Towards this, the US- Department of Energy has, as part of the Community Science Program (CSP) of the DOE's Joint Genome Institute (JGI) approved a large-scale genome sequencing project titled "Eucalypt genomic resources for woody biomass production and carbon drawdown". The genome sequencing and analysis will be done at the JGI and other associated institutes such as the HudsonAlpha Institute. The project leads, Prof. Zander Myburg at the University of Pretoria (UP)Prof. Justin Borevitz at Australian National University (ANU) and Prof. Jill Wegzryn at University of Connecticut (UCONN) and their teams bring together expertise in forest molecular genetics, tree genomics and computational biology.

The DOE-JGI project will see more than 3,700 eucalypt tree genomes sequenced of which 2,200 are in common garden field trials in South Africa and 800 in similar landscape genomics trials in Australia. These trials will be hosted and maintained long-term as a resource for the international community. To unravel the vast genome and chemical diversity of the eucalypts, the JGI and project collaborators will also perform genome sequencing for most of the more than 900 eucalypt species in Australia.


The project aims to generate resources for genome-assisted improvement of woody biomass crops and for understanding how trees interact with changing environments in view of rapid climate change. The project follows on from a previous DOE-JGI funded project that generated the first genome of Eucalyptus grandis as a reference for this iconic group of woody plants.

bottom of page