Narrator: This is Science Today. The U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Energy are teaming together to decode the DNA of the soybean, which is the principal source of biodiesel. Researcher Jerry Tuskan is involved with the decoding effort at the Joint Genome Institute, a facility in Northern California that's operated by the University of California . Tuskan says the project is the largest plant genome to be attempted to sequence.
Tuskan: The U.S. Department of Energy has had for a long time, interest in developing bio-mass feed stocks for alternative fuels. And soybean has been on the list as a candidate to produce biodiesel mainly from oils crushed out of the seeds or hulls and then that oil is converted into biodiesel. It's hard not to be optimistic and excited about the potential to really make a difference here. As a country, we can bring to bear these resources and impact our transportation fuels industry are currently deployed and managed.
Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.