Sci/Tech

ADVERTISEMENT

How Corn Became King
July 28, 2015 09:12 AM - Kelly April Tyrrell, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Ten thousand years ago, a golden grain got naked, brought people together and grew to become one of the top agricultural commodities on the planet.

Now, University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers have found that just a single letter change in the genetic script of corn's ancestor, teosinte, helped make it all possible.

Publishing in the journal Genetics this month, UW-Madison genetics Professor John Doebley and a team of researchers describe how, during the domestication of corn, a single nucleotide change in the teosinte glume architectural gene (tga1) stripped away the hard, inedible casing of this wild grass, ultimately exposing the edible golden kernel.

» Read Full Article
» Read More from Ecosystems Topic

SPOTLIGHT

Breeders select trait to conserve drinkable water

Kaine Korzekwa, American Society of Agronomy

Plants need water. People need water. Unfortunately, there’s only so much clean water to go around — and so the effort begins to find a solution.

Luckily for people, some plants are able to make do without perfectly clean water, leaving more good water for drinking. One strategy is to use treated wastewater, containing salt leftover from the cleaning process, to water large areas of turf grass. These areas include athletic fields and golf courses. Golf courses alone use approximately 750 billion gallons of water annually in arid regions.

However, most plants cannot tolerate a lot of salt. As some areas of the United States run low on clean water, plant breeders are trying to breed plants that are more salt tolerant. This would conserve clean water while maintaining healthy turf.

Plant breeders can actually see the individual effect of what each parent plant passes on because the genes add intensity to the trait. These are additive effects. Breeders can more easily select for those features when they observe those differences.

What's new on our Community Blog



Are You Smarter Than a Reptile?


July 29th, 2015
Are you smarter than a reptile? In many respects, you certainly are. After all, no reptile is going to read this article. However, our clearly superior intellectual abilities for certain skills has seduced us towards a dismissive attitude towards the surprisingly deep and broad range of analytical gifts of our companion creatures.
To read the full post and comment, visit the ENN Community Blog

Forest’s Ecosystem Management

July 21st, 2015
Why Preserve Forests and Plant Trees?
To read the full post and comment, visit the ENN Community Blog

Energy Consumption in Homes Across Europe

July 10th, 2015
The largest since source of energy consumption comes from buildings. This piece looks at how the EU is performing in terms of reducing energy consumption in the home and what else can be done.
To read the full post and comment, visit the ENN Community Blog

Terms of Use | Privacy Policy

2015©. Copyright Environmental News Network