A molecular study carried out on the chestnut gall wasp, Dryocosmus kuriphilus, has revealed the absence of genetic variability in this invasive species, a chestnut-tree parasite, in Europe. This is due to the fact that the wasp's reproduction is strictly parthenogenetic, the females produce more females without having to be fertilized by a male. The high capacity of reproduction of the females, producing genetically identical daughters, give this insect a high invasive potential.
Smog is a problem. But the knowledge about its constituents -- no longer. Researchers from several leading Warsaw scientific institutions have joined forces and developed a new, extremely precise method for the chemical analysis of suspended particulate matter. The method, easily adaptable in many modern laboratories, not only determines the chemical composition of compounds, but even recognizes changes in the spatial distribution of atoms in molecules.
Sweet potatoes may seem as American as Thanksgiving, but scientists have long debated whether their plant family originated in the Old or New World. New research by an Indiana University paleobotanist suggests it originated in Asia, and much earlier than previously known.
Scientists at the University of Kent have made a significant discovery about how the vitamin content of some plants can be improved to make vegetarian and vegan diets more complete. Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is an essential dietary component but vegetarians are more prone to B12 deficiency as plants neither make nor require this nutrient. But now a team, led by Professor Martin Warren, has proved that common garden cress can take up cobalamin.
University of Adelaide-led research has uncovered the history of when and why the native vegetation that today dominates much of Australia first expanded across the continent.
Researchers at UBC's Okanagan campus have developed a new method of measuring phytocannabinoids -- the primary bioactive molecules in cannabis -- that will lead to faster, safer and more accurate information for producers, regulators and consumers alike.
What happens when pests resist all forms of herbicides and pesticides? To slow the evolutionary progression of weeds and insect pests gaining resistance to herbicides and pesticides, policymakers should provide resources for large-scale, landscape-level studies of a number of promising but untested approaches for slowing pest evolution.
In the battle between plants and pathogens, molecules called small RNAs are coveted weapons used by both invaders and defenders. In a paper publishing Thursday (May 17) in the journal Science, researchers at the University of California, Riverside report how plants package and deliver the sRNAs they use to fight back against plant pathogens. The study focused on Botrytis cinerea, a fungus that causes a grey mold disease in strawberries, tomatoes, and almost all fruits, vegetables, and many flowers.
New research finds that limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees C would save the majority of the world's plant and animal species from climate change. Species across the globe would benefit -- particularly those in Southern Africa, the Amazon, Europe and Australia. Examples of animals to benefit include the critically endangered black rhinoceros. Reducing the risk to insects is important because they are vital for 'ecosystem services' such as pollinating crops and being part of the food chain.
A team of researchers believe that, paradoxically, climate change may result in Quebec's national and provincial parks becoming biodiversity refuges of continental importance as the variety of species present there increases. They calculated potential changes in the presence of 529 species in about one third of the protected areas in southern Quebec. Their results suggest that fifty -- eighty years from now (between 2071-2100) close to half of the protected regions of southern Quebec may see a species turnover of greater than 80 %.