The genome of cultivated peanut provides insight into legume karyotypes, polyploid evolution and crop domestication

Nat Genet. 2019 May;51(5):865-876. doi: 10.1038/s41588-019-0402-2. Epub 2019 May 1.


High oil and protein content make tetraploid peanut a leading oil and food legume. Here we report a high-quality peanut genome sequence, comprising 2.54 Gb with 20 pseudomolecules and 83,709 protein-coding gene models. We characterize gene functional groups implicated in seed size evolution, seed oil content, disease resistance and symbiotic nitrogen fixation. The peanut B subgenome has more genes and general expression dominance, temporally associated with long-terminal-repeat expansion in the A subgenome that also raises questions about the A-genome progenitor. The polyploid genome provided insights into the evolution of Arachis hypogaea and other legume chromosomes. Resequencing of 52 accessions suggests that independent domestications formed peanut ecotypes. Whereas 0.42-0.47 million years ago (Ma) polyploidy constrained genetic variation, the peanut genome sequence aids mapping and candidate-gene discovery for traits such as seed size and color, foliar disease resistance and others, also providing a cornerstone for functional genomics and peanut improvement.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Arachis / embryology
  • Arachis / genetics*
  • Arachis / physiology
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Chromosomes, Plant / genetics
  • Disease Resistance / genetics
  • Domestication
  • Droughts
  • Ecotype
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Genome, Plant
  • Karyotype
  • Peanut Oil / metabolism
  • Plant Breeding
  • Plant Diseases / prevention & control
  • Plant Proteins, Dietary / metabolism
  • Polyploidy
  • Seeds / anatomy & histology
  • Seeds / genetics


  • Peanut Oil
  • Plant Proteins, Dietary