snapdragon genome database
01 02 03


Our paper is published in Nature Plants:
Li M, Zhang D, Gao Q, et al. Genome structure and evolution of Antirrhinum majus L[J]. Nature plants, 2019: 1. doi: 10.1038/s41477-018-0349-9
Zhu S, Zhang Y, Copsy L, et al. The Snapdragon Genomes Reveal the Evolutionary Dynamics of the S-Locus Supergene[J]. Molecular Biology and Evolution, 2023, msad080. doi:

Editorial comments on our work is published in Nature Plants:
Return of the snapdragon. doi: 10.1038/s41477-019-0377-0

Genome assembly version 3.0 now available

The updated version 3.0 mainly combined both BioNano and Hi-C data. Scaffold N50 were increased to 19.96 Mb. Chromosome quality has been improved: 37232 genes are located in the chromosomes and the inversions in Chromosome 1 and 2 were updated.


Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus) is a popular ornamental plant in the world. It has showy, colorful and personate corolla and is widely used as fresh cut flower, hanging baskets and garden plants in floricultural industry. Wild snapdragon (Linaria vulgaris), and the other closely relatives of snapdragon in nature, Plantago, Digitalis, Cistanche, Scrophularia, Salvia and so on, are all traditional herbal medicines used in clinical practice, especially during the long history of Chinese medicine.

Snapdragon has been an everlasting model in the field of plant science research. In fact, it was used in the earliest studies of inheritance by Darwin and Mendel in the nineteenth century. Because of its active transposable elements in genome generating rich mutant resources, the organism has served as a versatile and excellent system in molecular genetics and developmental biology in the past three decades. In 1990, the first floral plant homeotic gene, DEFICIENS (DEF), was isolated in snapdragon. Based on studies other MADS-box genes in snapdragon and similar studies of homeotic mutations in Arabidopsis, the ABC model of floral development was proposed in 1991. Since then, molecular floral genetics had been established and revealed that the model is largely conserved among flowering plants.

In general, the Antirrhinum genus possesses over forty taxa divided into three sections according to the latest molecular phylogenetic study and is characterized by diverse habitats of fertile soil, sterile sand and thin rock face. To promote out-cross and prevent inbreeding, the genus has evolved two major mating systems, insect pollination and self-incompatibility. Importantly, many taxa in the genus are endangered and need to be conserved in wild due to economic and social development. In genomics era, the Antirrhinum genus is an ideal model for genetic, genomic and evolutionary studies.

Currently, a whole genome shotgun genome sequence of the JI7 inbred line of Antirrhinum majus is being generated by the Institute of Genetics and Developmental Biology (IGDB) of the China Academic of Science (CAS), in collaboration with the John Innes Centre (JIC, UK) and the Beijing Genomic Institute (Shenzhen, China). The assembled N50 contig and scaffold sizes were 0.73 Mb and 2.6 Mb, respectively. A total of 37,714 genes were predicted in the snapdragon genome.

As a popular floriculture plant and an ideal model of floral development and evo-devo studies, the snapdragon genome will provide an invaluable new resource for plant development, adaption and evolution studies. To facilitate the access of public academic users the genome data and related information, the Snapdragon Genome Database has been developed and will be regularly updated.