Scientists Identify Two New Proteins Connected To Plant Development

The discovery of two new proteins could lead to better ways to regulate plant structure and the ability to resist crop stresses such as drought, thus improving agriculture productivity, according to researchers at Texas A&M AgriLife Research.

The two proteins, named RICE1 and RICE2, are described in the May issue of the journal eLife, based on the work of Dr. Xiuren Zhang, AgriLife Research biochemist in College Station. Read more


Innovative Genetic Approaches to Sorghum Germplasm Improvement and Analysis of Traits Critical to Hybrid Development

Interpretive Summary: Perennial crops offer a significant potential for sustainable production of food, feed, and biofuel feedstocks. Successful development of perennial cereal crops, however, has been largely limited to rice, wheat, and intermediate wheatgrass. Based on its ability to cross with perennial grassy relatives, the cereal crop sorghum offers a viable option towards developing perennial warm-season grain crops. To provide geneticists with new sources of perennial grain germplasm, we crossed an elite grain sorghum line to a perennial relative of sorghum to introduce the perennial trait into grain sorghum. The result is a sorghum genetic stock that overwinters well in the deep southern U.S., produces considerable biomass, and yields a seed crop each year without replanting. As a hardy overwintering cereal, this perennial sorghum may serve as a novel resource to further dissect mechanisms of perennialism as well as develop non-invasive, perennial sorghum germplasm suitable for utilization as grain, forage, and biofuel feedstocks.

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