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Growing fuel and medicine: Advancing biofuels and plant-produced therapeutics
Date:10/27/2008

s. In addition, I will also present our progress on the characterization of two novel enzymes involved in the MI pathway to AsA and well as our efforts in investigating how these high AsA mustard lines respond when challenged with herbivores. Engineering crops to have elevated vitamin C may lead to delayed senescence, increased biomass, stress tolerance, and enhanced phytoremediation capabilities.


"Cellulase enzymes for biomass conversion from the transgenic maize production system"

Elizabeth Hood, PhD, Associate Vice Chancellor for Research and Technology Transfer, Arkansas Bioscience Institute, Arkansas State University

One of the major constraints with production of lignocellulosic ethanol is the cost and volume of enzymes required to digest the feedstock. Enzymes produced in commodity crops can resolve both of these issues. We have developed transgenic maize plants that produce E1 -D-glucosidase and cellobiohydrolase I in seed. Enzyme amounts in the first generation seed for both enzymes were as high as17 percent of total soluble protein. Our results suggest that enzyme amount is affected by several factors including subcellular localization and the promoter used to drive gene expression. Southern hybridization analysis indicates that the gene is present at one copy per genome, simplifying breeding and regulatory issues. Protein accumulation can be increased several fold over multiple generations through breeding (Hood et al., 2003), thus it is our expectation that cellulase accumulation can be improved to 3-5 percent of dry weight. This concentration of cellulase can provide for a cost-effective enzyme supply for the developing biomass to ethanol industry.


"The awesome power of yeast"

Reeta Prusty Rao, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Biology and Biotechnology, WPI

"The awesome power of yeast (genetics)"an adaptation of a quote by Prof. David Botstein
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Contact: Michael Cohen
mcohen@wpi.edu
508-868-4778
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Source:Eurekalert

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