By temporarily silencing the expression of a critical gene, researchers fooled soybean plants into sensing they were under siege, encountering a wide range of stresses. Then, after selectively cross breeding those plants with the original stock, the progeny 'remember' the stress-induced responses to become more vigorous, resilient and productive plants, according to a team of researchers.
One important aspect of biodiversity is genetic variation within species. A notable example is the variety of cultivars of crop plants. An international research consortium led by the of the Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK Gatersleben) and supported by the iDiv research centre has now characterised at the molecular level a world collection of barley, comprising seed samples from more than 22,000 varieties. The study was published in Nature Genetics.
If you were to take a seed and zap it into the future to see how it will respond to climate change, how realistic might that prediction be? More so than was previously realized, according to a study from UC Davis and the University of Southampton.
New research debunks a long-held theory that corn and other grass crops are susceptible to cold because they lack the space in their leaves needed to boost photosynthetic efficiency in low temperatures.
In a new effort from Point Blue Conservation Science and Santa Clara University, researchers led by Dr. Kristen Dybala compiled carbon storage data from 117 publications, reports, and other data sets on streamside forests around the world. Researchers found that the average amount of carbon stored in mature streamside forest rivals the highest estimates for any other forest type around the world, such as tropical or boreal forests.
Plants have evolved ways to make ants defend them from attacks and spread their seeds, and this new study shows how it happened. In a new study breaking down the genetic history of 1,700 species of ants and 10,000 plant genera, researchers found that the long history of ant and plant co-evolution started with ants foraging on plants and plants responding by evolving ant-friendly traits.
The physical presence of trails has less impact on forest birds than how frequently the trails are used by people, finds the first study to disentangle the effect of forest trails from the presence of humans. This is also the case when trails have been used for decades, suggesting that forest birds do not get used to human activity. To minimize disturbance, people should avoid roaming from designated pathways.
Two recent studies by ecologists from the National University of Singapore have shed light on the relationship between the slender pitcher plant and its 'tenant', the crab spider Thomisus nepenthiphilus, providing insights to the little known foraging behaviours of the spider.
Geographers from the National University of Singapore have found that coastal vegetation such as mangroves, seagrasses, and salt marshes may be the most effective habitats to mitigate carbon emissions.
Based on data from Costa Rica spanning 1947 -- 2014, the authors of a new study found 50 percent of secondary forest patches were re-cleared within 20 years, and 85 percent were re-cleared within 54 years. This suggests that committing to reforesting lands for the long term, even if smaller in total area, may provide greater benefits (habitat, carbon storage, etc.) than quickly reforesting large areas (as many nations have promised under the Bonn Challenge).