Thanks for visiting!

This project is now in update mode. Check back regularly to see how things are progressing.

Sequencing the Banana Slug Genome

Raised toward our $20,000 Goal
139 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on November 20, at 10:59 PM PST
Project Owners

Sequencing the Banana Slug Genome


We did it; we will be sequencing the Banana Slug Genome! It's not too late to make a gift and join in with this incredible project. With additional funding, we can have a TA for the genome class and expose students to additional types of genomic data and analysis.


We just recieved the $12,500 match from Ken, Branwyn, Leslie, and Lou. Thank you to everyone who helped us secure the match! With the match secured, we are only $300 from our $20,000 goal


Alumni Ken and Branwyn Wagman, along with their fellow slug Leslie Grate and his wife, have come together and are offering a great match challenge! They will be matching gifts two-to-one, tripling the impact of all future gifts.

UC Santa Cruz is world-renowned for its genomics research; namely, sequencing and publishing the human genome. We have spent an immense amount of time focusing on what makes us unique, now we are unraveling the mysteries of our slimy mascot. We are sequencing the genome of the banana slug.

UC Santa Cruz Genomics Institute's sequencing experts Nader Pourmand and Mark Akeson will use sophisticated technology to extract DNA from a sample, creating long chains of nucleic acids (A, C, T, and G). Assisting them in this endeavor will be UC Santa Cruz undergraduate students, lending a hand in sample preparation, sequencing, and developing DNA libraries during winter quarter. This will be an incredible opportunity for students to be involved in hands-on research.  

During spring quarter, UC Santa Cruz faculty members Ed Green and Kevin Karplus will lead a team of graduate students in assembling the genome sequence and annotating the data collected from the sample. This will make the information more accessible and allow researchers to analyze the extensive quantity of information.

There are stark differences between our banana slug, Ariolimax dolichophallus, and its close relatives. The results of this project will provide invaluable insight on species diversity, with implications for understanding the evolutionary differentiation in reproductive and sexual behavior. There is not an abundance of information on our unique mascot, but this investigation will provide  profound knowledge on our slimy species. In addition, this information will contribute to conservation efforts of animals world-wide.

To make this feat a reality, we need your help. The sequencing materials, researcher’s time, and professor’s resources will cost $20,000. Make a gift to join your fellow banana slugs in this once-in-a-lifetime research opportunity, and show off your Slug Pride!  


Our way
of Thanking You


Thank You!

Thank you so much for giving - go Slugs!

48 of Unlimited Claimed
Estimated Delivery: October 2014


Thank You Letter

Handwritten thank you letter from Sammy

30 of Unlimited Claimed
Estimated Delivery: December 2015


Signed Sammy Photo

Receive an autographed photo from Sammy!

28 of Unlimited Claimed
Estimated Delivery: December 2014


Classroom Visit

Come check out the Banana Slug Genomics class that you helped fund, the first 30 gifts will have this amazing opportunity.

4 of 30 Claimed
Estimated Delivery: April 2015


Tour of Genomics Lab

Take a tour of the UC Santa Cruz Genomics lab, led by one of our outstanding faculty members. The first 10 gifts will be able to take part in this tour.

3 of 10 Claimed
Estimated Delivery: December 2014