Ipomoea_batatas_006

The Sweet Potato Migrated To Polynesia Before Early Human Arrival

Defining the history of early mankind has long been a desire for archaeologists and others who study ancient artifacts of civilization. How we spread over time and to where and how our cultures interacted with each other proves a source of fascination and knowledge on when we developed technologies and especially agricultural techniques. The trip […]

Early embryonic development of Encarsia pergandiella. Nature as art or vice versa?

Mapping Cell Lineages Using CRISPR Cas9-Based Genetic Scarring

There are a number of errors that can happen when an organism develops from an embryo to an adult. A single missing cell or a cell out of place can have catastrophic results for the matured individual. Even a slightly altered rate of cell division at such an early stage is more likely to cause […]

Corn earworm

New Hybrid Swarm Combines Deadly Agricultural Pests Into Mega-Pests

Protecting farmers and their agricultural output around the world is a daunting task. Each region has its own trials and tribulations related to their temperature, rainfall, soil consistency, and of course, their pathogens. An unfortunate side effect of the otherwise hugely beneficial impact of international trade is that the pathogens faced in one corner of […]

Samphire salt marsh - St Kilda South Australia

Plant Salt Tolerance: Recent Research in Biotechnology

The health of plants is paramount for farmers, gardeners, and scientists alike. They not only provide the food we need to survive, but their overall well-being is a marker for the strength of the environmental conditions around them. And there are many things, much like with us humans, that can be a cause for alarm. […]

Neuron cluster

New CRISPR Tool Manipulates RNA Splicing to Control the Transcriptome

Control over the genome and the epigenome has continued to be a prime focal point for the fields of science. New genome editing technologies and their related epigenetic tools has only exacerbated this spotlight. However, there are other areas of expression control that are available and some techniques, such as RNA interference (RNAi), seem to […]

Müürlooga õie stigma

Epimutagenesis Controls DNA Methylation To Reveal Hidden Plant Traits

Properly breeding a plant for the traits you want is hard. It requires hundreds of plants and hundreds of cross-breeding attempts between them to obtain desired traits, isolate them, and cross them into more vigorous cultivars with other wanted traits. That was how it was done for most of human history and it’s a long, […]

Creek and old-growth forest-Larch Mountain

The Role of Prions in Plants: An Overview

The diseases out there in the world seem limitless. Every new nook and cranny we uncover shows new lifeforms and new diseases they cause or that are subjected upon them. The Earth is just a melting pot of infection (and parasitism) of every species trying to take advantage of every other. Due to their ubiquity, […]

A thaliana seedlings (cropped)

Manipulating The Plant-Bacteria Microbiome To Optimize Growth

When dealing with plants in a lab, in a garden, or in an agricultural field, we often forget that there was originally a whole biome that those plants were involved in in the wild. We often try to simulate those conditions to the best of our capabilities, but there is still so much knowledge we […]

Stem rust close up

A Decades Old Once Thought Eradicated Scourge Returns To Europe

As we have seen so often in recent years when it comes to human pathogens, eradicating a disease from a major population, country, or continent does not mean those results will be permanent forever. Any sort of laxity in preventative treatment and strict efforts against global spread can result in the re-emergence of a deadly […]

CSIRO ScienceImage 11085 A scanning electron micrograph of a female dust mite

Evolutionary Rewiring of Dust Mite Genome Made Unique RNAi Silencing

Parasites are a common theme of biological research due to the impact they have on people’s lives and their ubiquity in organisms around the world. It is practically impossible to find an organism that doesn’t have some sort of parasitic pathogen on or inside them. Even many of the parasites themselves have parasites inside of […]