Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

Media Contact: Ron Walli (wallira@ornl.gov)
Communications and External Relations


Science paper features work of ORNL's Tuskan, DOE-JGI

Black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa)
OAK RIDGE, Tenn., Sep. 15, 2006 — A Science paper published today highlighting the analysis of the first complete DNA sequence of the black cottonwood (Populus trichocarpa) lays the groundwork that may lead to the development of trees as an ideal feedstock for a new generation of biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol.

The paper's lead author, Jerry Tuskan of Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Environmental Sciences Division, noted the significance of the four-year collaboration led by the Department of Energy's Joint Genome Institute and ORNL, saying, "Biofuels are not only attractive for their potential to cut reliance on oil imports but also their reduced environmental impact.

Biofuels emit fewer pollutants than fossil fuels such as gasoline. In addition, poplar and related plants are vital managers of atmospheric carbon." The research is featured on the cover of Science. For more information visit: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-09/dgi-tft090806.php .