Articles

Entries with Sector Types Food Supply .

Black-grass Resistance Initiative gets battle underway

Work is now well underway as part of a £2.8M BBSRC-HGCA-funded project to tackle the threat to cereal crops posed by the weed black-grass. A consortium of researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh, Newcastle, Sheffield and York with colleagues from Rothamsted Research and the Zoological Society of London started working on the four-year BBSRC-HGCA Black-grass Resistance Initiative...
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Gene critical to the development of low arsenic plants identified

A discovery could pave the way for a new generation of crops which do not absorb high levels of the poison arsenic. Concerns about arsenic in food have grown in recent years with high concentrations found in rice, fruit juices and even baby food. A naturally occurring element found in soil and water, arsenic has also been used as a pesticide, and is taken up by plants and can then enter...
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Coffee genome sequence could lead to development of new coffee varieties

Coffee is said to be as one of the most important crops in the world, not just because it forms an essential part of the working day for many us, but also economically, with an amazing 2.25 billion cups estimated as being consumed every day. It is therefore not surprising that an international group of scientists, coordinated by researchers from IRD, the CEA (Genoscope), CIRAD, the...
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Genetic toolkit finds new maximum for crop yields

Scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) today announced a new way to dramatically increase crop yields by improving upon Mother Nature’s offerings. A team led by Associate Professor Zachary Lippman, in collaboration with Israeli colleagues, has discovered a set of gene variations that can boost fruit production in the tomato plant by as much as 100%.  Plant breeders...
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Draft genome of domesticated common carp

A team of researchers from China, the US, and Hungary have published the darft genome of the  common carp, Cyprinus carpio , in Nature Genetics . The common carp makes up 10% of global freshwater aquaculture production, so this genome sequence could play a role in sustainable food production through genpme-assisted breeding. The genome assembly consisted of 52,610...
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Genetic switch regulates a plant’s internal clock based on temperature

Scientists have discovered a key molecular cog in a plant’s biological clock – one that modulates the speed of circadian (daily) rhythms based on temperature. Transcription factors, or genetic switches, drive gene expression in plants based on external stresses – such as light, rain, soil quality, or even animals grazing on them. A team of researchers at USC has isolated one, called...
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Review finds no sign of health or nutrition problems from GMO livestock feed

A newly published review of the prevalence and impacts of genetically engineered (GE) feedstuffs on livestock populations has concluded that there are no signs of health or nutrition problems as a result of these feeds. The scientists collated information from the scientific literature on the performance and health of animals fed with feedstuffs containing GE ingredients, and on the...
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NC State receives grant to improve African sweet potatoes

North Carolina State University will receive $12.4 million over the next four years from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to improve a crop that is an important food staple in sub-Saharan Africa – the sweet potato. The grant will fund work to develop modern genomic, genetic and bioinformatics tools to improve the crop’s ability to resist diseases and insects and tolerate drought...
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Top candidate genes identified for corn's “spotty” defense mechanism

When corn plants come under attack from a pathogen, they sometimes respond by killing their own cells near the site of the attack, committing “cell suicide” to thwart further damage from the attacker. This cell sacrifice can cause very small, often microscopic, spots or lesions on the plant. But up until now it’s been difficult to understand how the plant regulates this “spotty” defense...
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How many different species are there in a packet of porcini mushrooms?

The Fungi Kingdom is enormously diverse yet vastly underdocumented – although some estimates range up to 10 million species, only about 100,000 species have been described. Mushrooms are one the most conspicuous and well known groups of Fungi and make up around 16,000 named species, but only a handful of these species are well documented. The race to describe and document fungi ...
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Help Rabbit-Genome Biology Net present the case for rabbits feeding the world

Rabbit Genome Biology-Net  is inviting and encouraging rabbit enthusiasts from around the world to help gather information about all rabbit genetic resources/breed/lines for meat production in the world, including details about production performance, if available. This includes researchers and people in charge of rabbit breeds/lines (national breeder associations, breeding...
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Coffee genome sheds light on the evolution of caffeine

The newly sequenced genome of the coffee plant has revealed secrets about the evolution of caffeine.  The scientists who completed the project say the sequences and positions of genes in the coffee plant show that they evolved independently from genes with similar functions in tea and chocolate, which also make caffeine.  In other words, coffee did not inherit caffeine-linked...
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Wild tomato genome sequence could help improve stress tolerance of domestic tomatoes

The genome of a inedible wild tomato ( Solanum pennellii ) has been published in Nature Genetics, and it is hoped that it may prove useful in improving certain traits, such as drought tolerance and taste, in domestic strains of tomato.   Journal Reference : Anthony Bolger et al.  The genome of the stress-tolerant wild tomato species Solanum pennellii .  Nature...
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African rice genome sequence published

A team of international researchers have published the genome sequence of African rice ( Oryza glaberrima ). African rice shows better adaptation to stressful environmental conditions such as drought than the more popular Asian rice ( Oryza sativa ) so it is hoped that this genome sequence could provide clues to breeding more resilient rice.   Journal Reference : Muhua...
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How black truffles deal with the jumpers in their genome

Black truffles ( Tuber melanosporum ), also known as Périgord truffles, have a syrupy sweet flavor and are highly prized in haute cuisine. They are fungi that grow on the roots of oak and hazelnut trees, and are the second most expensive truffle species.  The black truffle uses reversible epigenetic processes to regulate its genes, and adapt to changes in its surroundings. The...
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Discovery provides new targets for breeding powdery mildew resistant barley

New research at the University of Adelaide has opened the way for the development of new lines of barley with resistance to powdery mildew. In Australia, annual barley production is second only to wheat with 7-8 million tonnes a year. Powdery mildew is one of the most important diseases of barley. Senior Research Scientist Dr Alan Little and team have discovered the composition of...
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Genetic blueprint of bread wheat genome unveiled

The International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium (IWGSC) published today in the international journal  Science  a draft sequence of the bread wheat genome. The chromosome-based draft provides new insight into the structure, organization, and evolution of the large, complex genome of the world’s most widely grown cereal crop. The genetic blueprint is an invaluable resource...
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New £12m Centre of Excellence agreed for plant and microbial science

Scientific partnerships between the UK and China are being strengthened with the establishment of a £12M centre for plant science and microbiology spanning the two countries. The joint John Innes Centre/Chinese Academy of Sciences Centre of Excellence in Plant and Microbial Science will enhance research to support the agricultural technology and microbial genetics agendas of both...
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1,000 Bull Genomes Project publishes phase one results

An international team of researchers has published the results of whole-genome sequences from 234 cattle. The 1,000 Bull Genomes Project has looked at four breeds so far (Angus, Holstein, Fleckvieh, and Jersey) and found more than 28 million gene variants. They hope to use the information gathered to develop breeding programmes to improve the efficiency of beef and milk production. ...
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Scientists complete pig exome

PIC, a division of Genus plc, in collaboration with Edinburgh Genomics and The Roslin Institute at the University of Edinburgh, have announced that they have been the first to complete exome sequencing in pigs. Exome sequencing is a cost-effective strategy to selectively sequence the most important parts of DNA and enables faster genomic progress. The extensive results of this research,...
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