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Maize in Biological News

Early origins of maize in Mexico

The ancestors of maize originally grew wild in Mexico and were radically different from the plant that is now one of the most important crops in the world. While the evidence is clear that maize was first domesticated in Mexico, the time and location of the earliest domestication and dispersal e...

Ancient Mexican maize varieties

Maize was first domesticated in the highlands of Mexico about 10,000 years ago and is now one of the most important crop plants in the world. It is a member of the grass family, which also hosts the world's other major crops including rice, wheat, barley, sorghum, and sugar cane. As early agri...

If corn is biofuels king, tropical maize may be emperor

When University of Illinois crop scientist Fred Below began growing tropical maize, the form of corn grown in the tropics, he was looking for novel genes for the utilization of nitrogen fertilizer and was hoping to discover information that could be useful to American corn producers. Now, howe...

Simulating kernel production influences maize model accuracy

MADISON, WI, Sept. 18, 2007 -- Recently, researchers at Iowa State University discovered a way to increase the accuracy of a popular crop model. By zeroing in on early stages leading up to kernel formation, scientists believe they can help improve yield predictions across a variety of environmenta...

Transgenic maize is more susceptible to aphids

The environmental consequences of transgenic crops are the focus of numerous investigations, such as the one published in the journal PloS ONE, which was carried out by Cristina Faria and her colleagues, under the supervision of Ted Turlings, professor in chemical ecology at the University of Neuc...

First all-African GM crop is resistant to maize streak virus

The first all-African genetically modified crop plant with resistance to the severe maize streak virus (MSV), which seriously reduces the continents maize yield, has been developed by scientists from the University of Cape Town and PANNAR PTY Ltd, a South African seed company. The research, publis...

Researchers find the earliest evidence of domesticated maize

Maize was domesticated from its wild ancestor more than 8700 years according to biological evidence uncovered by researchers in the Mexico's Central Balsas River Valley. This is the earliest dated evidence -- by 1200 years -- for the presence and use of domesticated maize. The researchers, led...

Team finds an economical way to boost the vitamin A content of maize

A team of plant geneticists and crop scientists has pioneered an economical approach to the selective breeding of maize that can boost levels of provitamin A, the precursors that are converted to vitamin A upon consumption. This innovation could help to enhance the nutritional status of millions o...

University of Arizona plant scientists to unravel maize genome

Researchers at The University of Arizona's plant sciences department and UA's BIO5 Institute have received a $29 million federal grant as part of a consortium to unlock the genetic code of the corn plant. The knowledge gained from the Maize Genome Sequencing Project will enable plant scientists and...

Genetically modified maize not found in southern Mexico

Contrary to what many scientists thought, genetically modified (GM) corn has not yet spread to native maize crops in southern Mexico. After analyzing tens of thousands of seeds from maize crops grown in 2003 and 2004, researchers from Mexico and the United States found no evidence of transgenes ...

Researcher gets NSF grant to create mutant maize lines

A Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI) researcher at Cornell University has received a grant to help assemble a unique database of DNA mutations in maize (corn). The project not only will allow researchers to study the effects of knocking out the function of single genes, one at a time, but also will ...

Sustainable agriculture at the ESA Annual Meeting

... Perennial plants produce more, require less input than annual croplands The major crops used globally to feed people and livestock wheat, rice, maize and soy are based on an annual system, in which crop plants live one year, are harvested, and are replanted the following year. These systems are no...

Restoring a natural root signal helps to fight a major corn pest

...ts beneficial organisms. Genetic transformation of maize plants resulted in the release of the naturally ac...l allow for an environmentally friendly growing of maize with minimized use of synthetic insecticides. The ...abrotica virgifera virgifera) is the most damaging maize pest in the US and is responsible for enormous fin...

Domestication of Capsicum annuum chile pepper provides insights into crop origin and evolution

...ild progenitors by different prehistoric cultures in Mexico, in contrast to maize and beans which appear to have been domesticated only once. Geographica...ocations is not significantly influencing genetic diversity, in contrast to maize and beans seeds, which are traded by farmers across long distances. Less g...

Is this the beginning of the end of plant breeding?

...ent colour, or with a different yield, etc.much simpler. It is now much closer to being po ssible to reproduce a plant that produces perfect potatoes, maize or rice, without the lottery of reassortment that each meiotic division and ensuing fertilization introduces. The first steps of both meiosis and ...

Natural seed treatment could drastically cut pesticide use

...and maize. Red spider mite attack on tomato plants was down by 80 per cent, aphid attack on sweet peppers cut by 70 per cent and caterpillar damage to maize was reduced by 38 per cent. Initial results were so encouraging that Becker Underwood quickly started large-scale field trials in a number of commer...

DOE JGI releases expanded version of Phytozome.net

...nus which includes alfalfa as a member), Arabidopsis thaliana , as well as maize bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) sequences from the maize Genome Sequencing Project ( http://www.maizesequence.org ). Phytozome, a...

Hunt for 'climate-ready' crops accelerates as organizations search seed collections worldwide

... tolerance to heat and drought stresses in Chilean maize crop collections; a project in India to find pearl...eratures; and a project to increase the ability of maize to cope with erratic rains, while increasing its n...g and molecular markers to increase the ability of maize to cope with erratic rains, while increasing its n...

Crop models help increase yield per unit of water used

...June 2009 issue of Agronomy Journal . The papers explore how four of the simulation models were used to simulate yield, water use, and WUE of cotton, maize (corn), quinoa, and sunflower in North and South America, Europe, and the Middle East. All the models simulated WUE adequately under well-watered cond...

New research reveals the earliest evidence for corn in the New World

...tion or been subject to as much debate as corn, or maize (Zea mays L.), arguably the most important crop of...e existed for years over what the wild ancestor of maize is and where and when it was domesticated. An ...iscovered the first direct evidence that indicates maize was domesticated by 8,700 years ago, the earliest ...

200,000 rice mutants available worldwide for scientific investigation

...e efforts are critical to understand gene function and, ultimately, the many biological processes that take place in rice and other grasses, including maize and wheat, which collectively produce our staple food." ...

Novel electric signals in plants

...in Jena. The novel "system potential" was detected in five different plant species, among them agricultural crops like tobacco (Nicotiana tabacum), maize (Zea mays), barley (Hordeum vulgare), and field bean (Vicia faba). ...

Scientists gather to protect global food security from return of devastating wheat fungus

...h station owned by the Mexican agricultural research program, INIFAP, and the farmer association Patronato, and used by the Mexico-based International maize and Wheat Improvement Center (in Spanish: Centro Internacional de Mejoramiento de Maz y Trigo, or CIMMYT) as a hub for its global wheat research effor...

200,000 rice mutants available worldwide for scientific investigation

...e efforts are critical to understand gene function and, ultimately, the many biological processes that take place in rice and other grasses, including maize and wheat, which collectively produce our staple food." ...

Saving wheat crops worldwide

... In a paper published today in the prestigious journal Science , scientists from CSIRO Plant Industry, the University of Zurich and the International maize and Wheat Improvement Center have identified a wheat gene sequence which provides protection against leaf rust, stripe rust and powdery mildew. "Ge...

Genome of a heat and drought resistant cereal plant analyzed

...e about one-fourth as large as the human genome is a good starting point for investigating the more complex genomes of important crop plants such as maize or sugarcane, especially since sorghum - like these two plants is a "C4 plant". Due to biochemical and morphological specialization, such plants us...

Sequencing of sorghum genome completed

...s been deeply involved in both the rice genome and maize (corn) genome sequencing projects. In 1982, he dev...is higher in protein and lower in fat content than maize and is close to maize in nutritional content. Its resistance to heat and...

Plants display 'molecular amnesia'

... Berkeley, epigenetic silencing was triggered in maize. Once triggered, the maize plant "remembers," and keeps the transposon "silenced" generation after gen... use transposons to probe for variations in the epigenetic landscape of the maize genome. It may turn out that forgetting can be as important as remembering....

Tool helps identify gene function in soybeans

...ntists can easily identify the exact gene where any single mutation occurs. This technique has been successfully used in a number of plants, including maize and the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. In the study, IPG scientists demonstrated the feasibility of this technique in the soybean. "Studying ...

Study a step toward disease-resistant crops, sustainability

...ility of plants to survive, Johal said. The MAGIC technique is described in a review article published this month in the journal Crop Science . maize contains more genetic diversity than any other model organism, making it an ideal plant for gene exploration, Johal said. In fact, two lines of corn a...

USAID grant awarded to improve food security in Africa

...cing production of staple food commodities, including the tomato one of the most important cash crops for small-scale growers in Africa, and rice and maize both major sources of dietary carbohydrates on the continent. The three-year project is funded by the United States Agency for International Developm...

Growing fuel and medicine: Advancing biofuels and plant-produced therapeutics

...es. "Cellulase enzymes for biomass conversion from the transgenic maize production system" Elizabeth Hood, PhD, Associate Vice Chancellor for R...modity crops can resolve both of these issues. We have developed transgenic maize plants that produce E1 -D-glucosidase and cellobiohydrolase I in se...

Researchers find an essential gene for forming ears of corn

...a gene essential in controlling development of the maize plant, commonly known in the United States as corn...ogical understanding of how the different parts of maize arise--important information for a plant that is t...ed sparse inflorescence1, or spi1, is involved the maize plant's synthesis of the growth hormone auxin. Thi...

A little nitrogen can go a long way

...cific management on profitability. The study was conducted on two irrigated maize fields in Nebraska in 2003 and 2004 -- a total of four site-years. Four...ogen application will be most profitable in situations with relatively wide maize to nitrogen fertilizer price ratios, and where a significant yield increase...

CSIRO enlisted to avert global wheat supply crisis

... the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) The University of Sydney's Plant Breeding Institute and the International Centre for Wheat and maize Improvement (CIMMYT), have coordinated the evaluation of Australian wheat varieties and breeding material against Ug99 in Kenya, to identify resistant...

UGA gets $2.5 million in grants to study plants to make biofuels

...s. "Ethanol from switchgrass is a very different story from ethanol from maize grain," Bennetzen said. "Ethanol from maize grain requires large inputs and produces no net carbon capture to reduce ca...

Plant parasite 'wiretaps' host

...efore the host dies, she said. Sinha's lab holds a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation to research plant parasites, notably Striga, which attacks maize crops in Africa. Striga cannot be imported into the U.S., so dodder serves as a model system. Ultimately, the researchers hope to use host RNA to t...

A green solution to biofuel production

...s focuses on producing cellulases, enzymes which can break down biomass, in maize seed. By carefully designing the processing chain, from a single crop of maize we can deliver oil that can be turned into biodiesel, cellulose that can be...

Genome communication

...r and her colleagues have studied paramutations in maize and other plants and have identified some of the g...on, will be presenting this work at a symposium on maize Biology at the annual meeting of the American Soci...o-workers have been investigating paramutations in maize at the b1 gene, which regulates the distribution o...

How to build a plant

...enomes to study how the reproductive structures of maize are formed. Dr. Hake, of the Plant Gene Expressio...logists in Mrida, Mexico (June 27, 3:10 PM). maize was first domesticated in the highlands of Mexico ...ng rice, wheat, barley, sorghum, and sugar cane. maize has a rich genetic history, which has resulted in ...
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