Firefly genome project is a SMRT grant finalist!

We are fortunate to be part of a diverse group of biologists collaborating to sequence the genome of Photinus pyralis- the Big Dipper Firefly. Our firefly genome project was chosen as finalist for PacBio’s “Explore your most interesting genome contest”.  The winner will be decided by popular vote! If you’d like to support our efforts to sequence the firefly genome, please visit our page on and vote.  See details below: Alex Wild Photinus swoosh original

Fireflies! These silent fireworks on warm summer nights fill us with wonder. But so much about these fascinating critters remains shrouded in mystery- from the details of how they light up their lanterns to the way some species are disappearing. A team of biologists has joined forces to sequence the genome of the Big Dipper Firefly, Photinus pyralis, your common backyard firefly. This project is part of the PacBio “Explore your most interesting genome” contest. If you’d like to see the firefly genome sequenced, please go to and vote for the project. Voting opens Monday, April 11 and runs through Sunday, May 1st. One person can vote once per day. Help us shed light on the genome of these captivating creatures!