Translating genomic discoveries into improved commercial outcomes for the South Sea Pearl industry (2014–2017)
Australia produces the South Sea Pearl, the world's most valuable pearl. Building upon our recent advances in understanding the relationship between genes expressed in the mantle of donor pearl oysters and the pearl sac of host oysters, we seek to understand why certain pearl oyster lineages consistently produce better South Sea Pearls. Based on gene expression profiling and other genetic data, we expect that by the end of the project we will have identified broodstock whose offspring consistently produce superior quality pearls. This knowledge will advance hatchery and farm practices, which in turn will enhance industry operations and the remote communities that support them.