A team at Washington University in St. Louis has created a bacteria that uses photosynthesis to create oxygen during the day, and at night, uses nitrogen to create chlorophyll for photosynthesis. This development could lead to plants that do the same, eliminating the use of some -- or possibly all -- man-made fertilizer, which has a high environmental cost.
Particulate matter deposits on leaves increase plant transpiration and the risk of plants suffering from drought. Particulate matter could thus be contributing more strongly to tree mortality and forest decline than previously assumed. This is suggested by results from a greenhouse study led by the university of Bonn, in which tree seedlings grown in almost particulate matter free air or in unfiltered air were compared. The results are now being published in "Environmental Research Letters".
In plants, it has been clear for a while that maternal signals regulate embryo development. However, the signal itself was unknown -- until now. Plant scientists at IST Austria, CEITEC, and the University of Freiburg have now found that a plant hormone called auxin from the mother is one of the signals that pattern the plant embryo. Their study is published today in Nature Plants.
At an archaeological site in northeastern Jordan, researchers have discovered the charred remains of a flatbread baked by hunter-gatherers 14,400 years ago. It is the oldest direct evidence of bread found to date, predating the advent of agriculture by at least 4,000 years. The findings suggest that bread production based on wild cereals may have encouraged hunter-gatherers to cultivate cereals, and thus contributed to the agricultural revolution in the Neolithic period.
The long-term conversion of mangroves to mudflats can lead to destabilization of shorelines, negatively impacting their resilience to extreme weather events. United States Geological Survey (USGS) scientists have measured surface elevation changes in these mangroves and adjacent mudflats for nearly 20 years.
Scientists have measured the nutritional value of herbivore dinosaurs' diet by growing their food in atmospheric conditions similar to those found roughly 150 million years ago.
Researchers have calculated the capacity of North American forests to sequester carbon in a detailed analysis that for the first time integrates natural processes and climate changes that are likely to alter growth over the next 60 years.
The genome of the algae species Chara braunii has been decoded. It already contains the first genetic characteristics that enabled the water plants' evolutionary transition to land.
University of Guelph researchers have discovered unsuitable soil at higher altitudes may be halting the advancement of treelines. This finding dispells the commonly held assumption that climate change is enabling trees to move farther uphill and northward. The researchers looked at plant growth at higher altitudes in the Canadian Rockies, grew spruce and fir seedlings at varying elevations and collected soil samples from the same areas to grow spruce seeds in growth chambers .
An international team, which included three University of Maryland researchers, sequenced and analyzed the genome of Chara braunii, a freshwater green alga closely related to land plants. By comparing Chara's genome to multiple land plant genomes, the team was able to identify many important genes that originated in a common ancestor shared by Chara and land plants.