Terra incognita : exploring Acca sellowiana genome


Acca sellowiana (Myrtaceae), known as feijoa or pineapple guava, is a diploid, (2n=2x=22) outcrossing fruit tree species native to Uruguay and Brazil.The species stands out for its highly aromatic fruits, with nutraceutical and therapeutic value. 

Despite a short history of (documented) domestication/breeding, feijoa  is cultivated as a promising crop in several countries worldwide.  Unfortunately, genetic and genomic studies on this species are limited. Genomic resources could speed-up breeding schemes as well as enable the development of  innovative products.

The groups at Universidad de la República (FAgro, Uruguay) and University of São Paulo (ESALQ, Brazil) have been working on the construction of A.  sellowiana linkage maps and recently  reported the first high density, composite map of A. sellowiana based on GBS-derived SNP. In addition,they are currently working on QTL analyses of fruit quality traits, the transcriptomics of reproductive and vegetative tissues, as well as the characterization of the repetitive fraction of the genome. 

To refine these inquiries  as well as to get a deeper insight on genome structural landscape, they plan to build a  reference, chromosome-scale genome assembly for the species by integrating sequence /positional information from  Bionano (optical mapping), PacBio (long-read sequencing) and high density maps. Moreover, they will use this reference genome assembly  to initiate comparative genomic studies within tribe Myrteae, a relevant, species-rich clade of fleshy-fruited plants.  


  • Project coordinator

Dr Clara Pritsch

Lab. de Biotecnología, Depto. Biología Vegetal.

Facultad de Agronomía, 

Universidad de la República,

Montevideo, Uruguay



  • Project partner

Dr Antonio Augusto F Garcia

Statistical Genetics Laboratory

Departamento de Genética

Escola Superior de Agricultura “Luiz de Queiroz”

Universidade de São Paulo

Piracicaba, Brazil


Laboratory website : http://statgen.esalq.usp.br/


  • Related publication

Construction of a high-density genetic map of Acca sellowiana (Berg.) Burret, an outcrossing species, based on two connected mapping populations. Quezada M, Amadeu RR, Vignale B, Cabrera D, Pritsch C, Garcia AAF. Front. Plant Sci., 23 February 2021 | https://doi.org/10.3389/fpls.2021.626811 in Research Topic: Breeding Innovations in Underutilized Temperate Fruit Trees


  • Funding


Universidad de la República - Uruguay

National Agency for Research and Innovation, Uruguay

CNPq - Brazil


  • CNRGV project leader

Caroline Callot


  • CNRGV implications

PacBio librairie and Optical map production


  • Start year of the project