In a new study, researchers used citizen-science data to determine the cause of the anomalous bloom and predict when similar events might occur.
Grass is cut regularly by our mowers and grazed on by cows and sheep, yet continues to grow back. The secret to its remarkable regenerative powers lies in part in the shape of its leaves, but how that shape arises has been a topic of longstanding debate.
Crops often have multiple genomes hybridised from their parents, a condition known as polyploidy. Previously plant breeding has used predictions based only on DNA sequence, but this research suggests that applying knowledge about RNA could help provide more accurate predictions of how traits are passed on.
Agriculture is the major player in contributing to global food security. Increasing our crop productivity is currently a challenging task due to the limitations of climatic change and decreasing of agricultural land. Sustainable agriculture has been considered an excellent solution for the prevailing and future environmental conditions. To contribute to sustainable agriculture by improving crop productivity, we need precise information about these crops. Knowledge about the interactions of different yield components is of great importance for the best possible exploitation of yield potential. In barley, it is particularly important to increase the number of grains per spike. However, which factors play a role in this and what differences there are between different barley row-types has hardly been researched so far.
A new study uses novel single-cell profiling techniques to reveal how plants add new cell layers that help them resist climate stressors like drought or flooding. The research focuses on corn—a critically important crop around the world—in an effort to create a cell-by-cell map of the plant’s root system, which mediates drought stress and absorbs nutrients and fertilizer from the soil.
A research team has discovered how a pathogenic fungus can bypass the immune system of plants. By releasing an ‘effector’ molecule, it avoids elimination at a critical stage in its reproduction cycle.
A brown blotch on a plant leaf may be a sign that the plant’s defenses are hard at work: When a plant is infected by a virus, fungus or bacterium, its immune response keeps the disease from spreading by killing the infected cell, as well as a few surrounding ones. A new study points to the evolutionary origins of this plant immune mechanism. The study may help explain how major plant defenses work and how they may one day be strengthened to increase resilience against plant diseases that each year cause billions of dollars of crop losses worldwide.
Iron (Fe) is an indispensable microelement for plant growth and development, but Fe excess can be toxic to plants. To maintain Fe homeostasis, plants must sense the environmental Fe concentration and fine-tune the expression of Fe uptake-associated genes accordingly. Previous studies have shown that bHLH11 is a negative transcription factor that regulates Fe homeostasis. However, the underlying molecular mechanism remains elusive.
Scientists are a step closer to breeding plants with genes from only one parent. New research shows the underlying mechanism behind eliminating half the genome and could make for easier and more rapid breeding of crop plants with desirable traits such as disease resistance.