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Celebrating 100 assemblies

Today, we are excited to hit the 100 assemblies mark on the DNA Zoo website with the release of 4 new mammalian genome assemblies: for the German Shepherd Dog (Canis lupus familiaris, German Shepherd Dog breed), here, the Eurasian otter (Lutra lutra), here, the coppery ringtail possum (Pseudochirops cupreus), here, and the golden ringtail possum aka plush-coated ringtail possum (Pseudochirops corinnae), here.

The German Shepherd Dog (GSD) is one of the most common breeds on earth. German Shepherds are known for their intelligence and strength, but are afflicted with a range of genetic diseases. To aid with the future disease and evolutionary studies, we have created a GSD genome assembly as part of a collaborative effort led by J. William O. Ballard at the School of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. The full list of people who contributed to building the resource includes: Matt A. Field, Benjamin D. Rosen, Olga Dudchenko, Eva K.F. Chan, Andre E. Minoche, Kirston Barton, Ruth J. Lyons, Daniel Enosi Tuipulotu, Richard J. Edwards, Vanessa M. Hayes, Arina D. Omer, Zane Colaric, Jens Keilwagen, Ksenia Skvortsova, Ozren Bogdanovic, Martin Smith, Erez Lieberman Aiden, Timothy P.L. Smith, Robert A. Zammit and J. William O. Ballard. The genome assembly is now available on NCBI at

The Eurasian otter is a ‘Near Threatened’ species from the IUCN Red List. It is a keystone species in the UK, which is why the Wellcome Sanger Institute made assembling the genome for this species a priority as part of its 25 Genomes Project. In collaboration with Sanger, today we release the chromosome-length assembly for the Eurasian otter, here. The fasta sequence is also available through the Vertebrate Genomes Portal, here.

Finally, in collaboration with the Mallarino Lab at Princeton University we share chromosome-length genome assemblies for two more marsupials: the coppery ringtail and the golden ringtail. We are grateful to the Australian Biological Tissue Collection at the South Australian Museum that donated material used for generating the sequencing libraries for these genome assemblies. Included in the share are the homology-based annotations for the species, courtesy MacManes Lab.

We are grateful to Terry Reis ( for giving us permission to use his photo for the coppery ringtail possum. We were not as lucky with the golden ringtail possum, so if you guys have any photos that you would like to donate, don’t hesitate to reach out!


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