HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Biologist traces coconut's history through DNA

The coconut has been popular in lore and on palates for centuries, yet little is known about the history of coconuts domestication and dispersal around the world.

Now, a biologist at Washington University in St. Louis is embarking on the task of understanding the plants history by exploring the genetics of the coconut (Cocos nucifera L.).

Kenneth Olsen, Ph.D., Washington University assistant professor of biology in Arts & Sciences, has received a $20,000 grant from the National Geographic Society to study the DNA of the plant, which can be used to infer historical relationships among populations. The work will be done in collaboration with Bee Gunn, a research specialist at the Missouri Botanical Garden.

Portable nutrition

The coconut played a crucial role in the history of human exploration and dispersal across the tropics, and it continues to play a fundamental role in human societies today, said Olsen. As a portable source of nutrition and water, the coconut was critical for humans to be able to voyage, establish trade routes, and colonize lands in the Pacific Rim, coastal India, Africa and South America.

Our preliminary DNA sequence data show genetic variation within the coconut, and this is key to delineating historical relationships among different populations.

Fossil data indicate that the coconut underwent an ancient dispersal event that predates human activity. This early dispersal is expected to have created a genetic signature that can be traced by examining the genetic structure of plants sampled across the species range.

Superimposed on this ancient phylogeographic structure is the more recent history of human dispersal, cultivation and domestication, Olsen continued.

Existing genetic data, while limited, suggest that the most highly domesticated Dwarf form, grown worldwide is most c
'"/>

Contact: Kenneth M. Olsen
kolsen@wustl.edu
314-935-7013
Washington University in St. Louis
6-Aug-2007


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Biologists at Tufts University discover 1 reason why chromosomes break, often leading to cancer
2. Biologists prove critical step in membrane fusion
3. Biologists call for better choice of model organisms in evo-devo
4. Biologists produce global map of plant biodiversity
5. Biologists develop large gene dataset for rice plant
6. Yale Cell Biologist Joel Rosenbaum, to receive Prestigious Wilson Award
7. Biologists probe the machinery of cellular protein factories
8. American Society of Plant Biologists Annual Meeting August 5-9 in Boston
9. Biologists find regions of rice domestication
10. How healthy is that marsh? Biologists count parasites
11. Biologists estimate the value of services provided by insects

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:12/4/2019)... ... December 04, 2019 , ... NDA Partners Chairman ... a regulatory toxicology expert with more than 20 years of experience working in ... Dr. Todd has extensive experience with a variety of biologic modalities including monoclonal ...
(Date:12/2/2019)... ... 01, 2019 , ... Each year The Scientist ... the life-science landscape. For more than a decade, our expert panels of independent ... biological discovery. This year’s crop of entries to The Scientist’s Top 10 Innovations ...
(Date:11/27/2019)... ... November 26, 2019 , ... ... their Glen Ellyn, IL practice for Invisalign® treatment. Invisalign orthodontics uses ... Patients with a misaligned bite, also known as malocclusion, present both functional and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/30/2019)... TOWNSHIP, N.J. (PRWEB) , ... December 30, 2019 ... ... of custom built, helium-based leak testing instruments for the Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology, Medical Device ... SIMS Version 1.11.19 21 CFR Part 11 compliant software program specific to the ...
(Date:12/27/2019)... , ... December 27, 2019 , ... ... studies for its 505(b)(2) product pipeline that offers patients and healthcare ... The products concepts were identified in collaboration with doctors and managed care professionals ...
(Date:12/18/2019)... SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (PRWEB) , ... December 17, 2019 ... ... it has received its 31st FDA clearance for reprocessing Electrophysiology (EP) devices since ... where closest competitors, Stryker Sustainability Solutions and SterilMed (a Johnson & Johnson company) ...
(Date:12/18/2019)... ... December 18, 2019 , ... Tune in to CNBC ... by Ted Danson. Check local listings for more information on this program. , With ... reality are helping to simplify complex system to increase the efficiency, safety and effectiveness ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: