Navigation Links
It's a gas: New discovery may lead to heartier, high-yielding plants

In a research report published in the November 2009 issue of the journal GENETICS (, scientists show how a family of genes (1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate synthase, or ACS genes) are responsible for production of ethylene. This gas affects many aspects of plant development, and this information lays the foundation for future genetic manipulation that could make plants disease resistant, able to survive and thrive in difficult terrain, increase yields, and other useful agronomical outcomes. This discovery was made with the weed Arabidopsis thaliana, but it will be applicable to plants used in agriculture.

"I hope that this work will provide insights into how a set of genes work together like a finely tuned symphony to regulate plant growth because we may be able to use such knowledge to engineer plants more suited to our changing world," said Athanasios Theologis, a senior scientist at the Plant Gene Expression Center of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the senior researcher involved in the work. "This is critically important because as the human population grows, we may need to produce more food in the same or in less space."

To understand the function and regulatory roles of each ACS gene in ethylene production during plant development, scientists from Theologis' laboratory analyzed the essential and nonessential roles of each of the family of Arabidopsis ACS genes. They found that while loss of any single ACS gene had no visible effect on the plant, it did affect the activity of other genes in the family. They grew different plants that had different combinations of these genes "turned on" and "turned off" and found that the members of this gene family have different but overlapping functions in plant development, such as growth, flowering time, gravitostimulation, and disease resistance.

"Ethylene gas is best known for causing fruit to ripen," said Mark Johnston, Editor-in-Chief of the journal GENETICS, "but the molecule is critical to development and growth of plants. By revealing how plants regulate the amount of ethylene they produce, this study gives scientists an entirely new genetic approach for developing heartier, more productive crops. This is becoming increasingly important as our planet warms and our population grows."


Contact: Tracey DePellegrin Connelly
Genetics Society of America

Related biology news :

1. Discovery of new type of immune cells regulating inflammation in chronic diseases
2. Accidental discovery produces durable new blue pigment for multiple applications
3. NJIT professor to speak about discovery to Physical Society
4. Fish vision discovery makes waves in natural selection
5. Graffinity Enters into Drug Discovery Research Collaboration with Genentech
6. Milestone discovery in cell behaviors
7. Major discovery opens door to leishmania treatment
8. Genetic discovery could break wine industry bottleneck, accelerate grapevine breeding
9. UCF discovery could open door to obesity, diabetes treatments
10. Gene discovery reveals a critical proteins function in hearing
11. Discovery of genetic mutation in Leigh syndrome
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/29/2015)... , Oct. 29, 2015   MedNet Solutions ... the entire spectrum of clinical research, is pleased to ... High Tech Association (MHTA) as one of only three ... the "Software – Small and Growing" category. The Tekne Awards ... who have shown superior technology innovation and leadership. ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... 2015  Connected health pioneer, Joseph C. Kvedar ... technology-enabled health and wellness, and the business opportunities that ... The Internet of Healthy Things . Long before ... existed, Dr. Kvedar, vice president, Connected Health, Partners HealthCare, ... moving care from the hospital or doctor,s office into ...
(Date:10/27/2015)... October 27, 2015 Munich, ... Gaze Mapping technology (ASGM) automatically maps data from mobile ... Glasses , so that they can be quantitatively ... Munich, Germany , October 28-29, 2015. ... data from mobile eye tracking videos created with ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/24/2015)... Israel , Nov. 24, 2015  Tikcro Technologies Ltd. (OTCQB: TIKRF) ... on December 29, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. Israel ... Electra Tower, 98 Yigal Allon Street, 36 th Floor, ... of Eric Paneth and Izhak Tamir to the ... Rami Skaliter as external directors; , approval of an amendment to ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... , Nov. 24, 2015  Twist Bioscience, ... that Emily Leproust, Ph.D., Twist Bioscience chief executive ... Healthcare Conference on December 1, 2015 at 3:10 ... in New York City. --> ... . Twist Bioscience is on Twitter. Sign ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... ... , ... InSphero AG, the leading supplier of easy-to-use solutions for production, culture, ... serve as Chief Operating Officer. , Having joined InSphero in November 2013 ... was promoted to Head of InSphero Diagnostics in 2014. There she has built ...
(Date:11/24/2015)... Nov. 24, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - ProMetic Life Sciences Inc. ... that Mr. Pierre Laurin , President and Chief Executive ... the upcoming Piper Jaffray 27 th Annual Healthcare Conference ... December 1-2, 2015. st , at 8.50am ... meetings throughout the day. The presentation will be available live ...
Breaking Biology Technology: