Navigation Links
'Biofortifying' one of the world's primary foods
Date:11/19/2007

HANOVER, NH The advent of the cultivation of grains was a boon to humankind, giving humans a type of food that could be stored long term and would sustain them through drought and famine. Grains, however, lack many of the nutrients needed to sustain life.

A new research project co-led by Mary Lou Guerinot, the Ronald and Deborah Harris Professor in the Biological Sciences, is aimed at making rice which supplies an estimated quarter of the calories humans consume each day a more nutritious food source.

Guerinot is the projects a co-principal investigator. David Salt, a horticulture professor at Purdue University, is the principal investigator; and Shannon Pinson, a research geneticist at Texas A&M University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is co-principal investigator.

Some food is fortified with nutrients when its processed, but very little of that food ever reaches the worlds poor. By contrast, Guerinot and her colleagues want to find genes that help the plants take up more essential nutrients from their environment as they grow. This makes for not only a more nutritious food source but also a healthier and more resilient plant. We feel biofortification is the way to go, she said. Rather than add nutrients to the food after its grown, wed like them to enter the food as it grows.

Funded by a four-year, $5.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation, the group will first analyze some 1,800 different rice varieties for the presence of 18 elements, including those helpful to humans, such as iron, zinc, potassium, and manganese, and such harmful trace elements as arsenic, cadmium, and lead. They will make this information freely available to the research community.

The bulk of the research, however, will be a painstaking study of the varieties that are highest in iron and zinc, to identify the genes that are responsible for the uptake and storage of those elements. The group is focusing on these elements because billions of people suffer from iron or zinc deficiencies, resulting in stunted growth, impaired cognitive function, and other health problems.

Guerinot and colleagues have already successfully identified the genes responsible for iron uptake from the soil in Arabidopsis, a small flowering plant in the mustard family that is widely used as a model organism in plant biology. [LINK TO RESEARCH RELEASE http://www.dartmouth.edu/~vox/0607/1204/guerinot.html]

In addition to possibly leading to the development of rice varieties that are higher in iron and zinc, the project could shed light on how plants turn on or off their ability to take up and store a whole array of elements, including harmful ones. This could be helpful to countries like Bangladesh, where rice is contaminated by the high levels of arsenic that naturally occur in the water. This knowledge also could help researchers seeking plants that can remove toxins from the environment.

The project is a truly collaborative effort among the three scientists. Pinson is in charge of growing and breeding the rice varieties. Salts lab has the specialized equipment that will be used for the initial analysis of the varieties elements. Both the Salt and Guerinot labs will study the regulation of nutrient uptake and storage, focusing on the genes identified as important in their analysis of the elemental content of the rice varieties.


'/>"/>

Contact: Rebecca Bailey
rebecca.a.bailey@dartmouth.edu
603-646-3661
Dartmouth College
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. BODY WORLDS 2 & Breathe California Pair Up for Some Ash Kicking
2. Is 4 agents decoction (Si Wu Tang) efficacious in treating primary dysmenorrhea?
3. Study finds primary care depression treatment often does not follow quality guidelines
4. Primary biliary cirrhosis more severe in African-American and Hispanic patients
5. New research may lead to earlier diagnosis and treatment of primary biliary cirrhosis in families
6. Revisions to College Cost Reduction and Access Act will create barriers to primary care
7. New Hampshire: 1st in the Nation Primary State Takes a Stand on E-Prescribing
8. Editorial says primary care system must change how it approaches dementia
9. S&P: Leverage Tops Politics as Primary Credit Concern for U.S. Health Care Companies, Says S&P
10. ENDEAVOR IV achieves primary endpoint, demonstrates similar safety profile compared to Taxus stent
11. Visual field loss primary component in risk of falls for older adults
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... throughout Arkansas that offers insurance and financial preparation services, is providing an update ... City Rescue organization. , Rock City Rescue is a locally recognized nonprofit that ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... the certification process to promote standards of excellence for the field of eating ... for March 22 – 25, 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... Apple Rehab Shelton Lakes , which specializes in the delivery of sub-acute ... of a disaster drill on October 3rd. , Apple Rehab participated with the Shelton ... well as the Connecticut Long Term Care Mutual Aid Plan (LTC-MAP). The LTC-MAP ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s 4th Annual Kids Fun ... NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s CEO, Jon Letko, is ... is geared towards children of all ages; it is a non-competitive, non-timed event, which ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: the story of a missionary couple ... From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is the creation of published author, Carole ... and currently teaches a class of ladies at her church, which she has taught ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... Pa. , Oct. 12, 2017 ... leader in innovative solutions for injectable drug administration, today ... before the market opens on Thursday, October 26, 2017, ... the results and business expectations at 9:00 a.m. Eastern ... (U.S.) or 253-336-8738 (International). The conference ID is 94093362. ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... Calif. , Oct. 10, 2017  NDS received FDA 510(k) ... — a medical-grade battery-powered display stand specifically designed for endoscopy environments. ... transform technology into a clinical solution to support the improvement of ... Innovative Design ... Mobile Wireless Solution ...
(Date:10/4/2017)... Oct. 4, 2017  According to the Centers for Disease Control and ... October . PhysicianOne Urgent Care is helping communities across Massachusetts ... , by offering no-cost* flu shots through the end of the ... certain health insurance regulations. ... time to get a flu shot is by the end of October, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: