HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
UNC, Penn State scientists find gene that controls water retention in plants

(Embargoed) CHAPEL HILL - Scientists at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, working with colleagues at Pennsylvania State University, have identified a gene responsible for controlling water retention and cell division in plants.

Their discoveries, announced in two papers appearing in the June 15 issue of the journal Science, raise the possibility of making crop plants more resistant to drought, a goal agronomists have pursued for decades.

"When I was born in 1957, there were 4 billion people on Earth, and if I die a natural death sometime around 2030, there will be about 10 billion," said Dr. Alan M. Jones, professor of biology at UNC. "That's an enormous increase in just one lifetime. If we are going to be able to feed all these people, we're going to figure out ways of improving and increasing the food supply by nontraditional means. We think this work is an important step toward doing that because researchers should be able to modify this gene to make crops hardier."

Besides Jones, UNC authors of the papers are biology graduate student Hemayet Ullah, research associate Jin-Gui Chen and former UNC postdoctoral fellow Kyung-Hoan Im. Penn State authors are postdoctoral fellow Xi-Qing Wang and Dr. Sarah M. Assmann, professor of biology.

In Chapel Hill, Jones' team, as part of a new multidisciplinary genome sciences initiative, created a mutation in a gene from a common laboratory plant, Arabidopsis, that rendered the gene nonfunctional. Mutant plants wilted more readily than normal plants because they were unable to retain water as well.

The UNC scientists suspected that the gene they targeted encodes a critically important molecule called a G protein that plays a central role in regulating the various signals such as light and hormones that control plant development. Their experiments showed they were right. But because the mutant plants wilted, they thought the gene probably also controlled water retention.

Since Assmann sp
'"/>

Contact: David Williamson
David_Williamson@unc.edu
919-962-8596
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
14-Jun-2001


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. New Arizona State center brings science to policy on issues of water resources and urban growth
2. K-State, other universities to study how climate affects plant evolution
3. K-States National Agricultural Biosecurity Center receives $1.3 Million from Department of Defense
4. K-State professor combines love of teaching, research to examine eye development
5. K-State researcher working to improve alternatives to equine antibiotics
6. Lung cancer patients in Japan, United States react differently to the same chemotherapy regimen
7. K-State business researchers to help with major study on food supply veterinary medicine
8. K-State researchers share $1 million grant to study insect pests
9. UC Riverside professor to spend year with US State Department
10. American Lung Associations 2004 State of the Air report ranks cities and counties with dirty air
11. K-State soil carbon sequestration research playing role in climate change efforts

Post Your Comments:
(Date:4/17/2014)... Orange, NJ. April 16, 2014. Kessler Foundation has ... $1.8 million from the Department of Defense Spinal ... is principal investigator for the randomized, double-blinded, controlled, ... improve bone and muscle strength after spinal cord ... Performance & Engineering Research at Kessler Foundation. Two ...
(Date:4/17/2014)... N.M. A credit-card-sized anthrax detection cartridge developed at ... business makes testing safer, easier, faster and cheaper. ... anthrax, is commonly found in soils all over the ... in both humans and animals. The bacteria can survive ... B. anthracis may occur through skin contact, ...
(Date:4/17/2014)... Kansas State University engineer has developed a patented ... improvised explosive devices. The same technique could help ... Steven M. and Kay L. Theede chair in ... engineering, and his research team have created a ... in car trunks. The distance detection method ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Kessler Foundation awarded Department of Defense grant for spinal cord injury research 2Pocket-sized anthrax detector aids global agriculture 2Pocket-sized anthrax detector aids global agriculture 3Patented research remotely detects nitrogen-rich explosives 2
(Date:1/15/2014)... IPSWICH, England , January 15, 2014 ... to win races on the Formula 1 track could help ... between McLaren Applied Technologies (MAT), Stowhealth (a GP surgery based ... funded by healthcare provider Simplyhealth. Telemetry technology, which ...
(Date:1/15/2014)... January 15, 2014 2013 was a ... Brain State Technologies®. They saw continued independent research led ... who were awarded a $1 million grant from the ... “Brain and Behavior” a peer reviewed journal, Amy Grant ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... Carahsoft and CDS Federal Services have ... at 2pm EST (11am PST), “Natural Language Processing: Converting ... how technology can turn raw, heterogeneous data into actionable ... The online webinar will last approximately one hour. , ...
(Date:1/14/2014)... 2014 The largest international professional organization of ... therapeutic derivatives thereof has endorsed an educational program ... the challenges of adulterated herb and botanical products. ... The Society for Medicinal Plant and Natural ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Formula 1 Technology Tackles Obesity in Unique Healthcare Partnership 2Formula 1 Technology Tackles Obesity in Unique Healthcare Partnership 3Formula 1 Technology Tackles Obesity in Unique Healthcare Partnership 4Dynamic Innovative Technology Showcased at Scottsdale Company’s Open House 2Dynamic Innovative Technology Showcased at Scottsdale Company’s Open House 3Webcast - Natural Language Processing: Converting Raw Data into Actionable Knowledge – Hosted by Carahsoft and CDS Federal Services 2World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 2World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 3World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 4World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 5World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 6World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 7World's Largest Group of Medicinal Plant Researchers Endorses ABC-AHP-NCNPR Botanical Adulterants Program 8
Cached News: