News

Researchers identify a gene that regulates the angle of root growth in corn

The discovery of a gene that regulates the angle of root growth in corn is a new tool to enable the breeding of deeper-rooting crops with enhanced ability to take up nitrogen, according to an international team of researchers, led by Penn State.

Claude dePamphilis named Huck Chair in Plant Biology and Evolutionary Genomics

Claude dePamphilis, Penn State Professor of Biology, has been named the Dorothy Foehr Huck and J. Lloyd Huck Distinguished Chair in Plant Biology and Evolutionary Genomics by the Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences.

What makes plant cell walls both strong and extensible?

A plant cell wall’s unique ability to expand without weakening or breaking — a quality required for plant growth — is due to the movement of its cellulose skeleton, according to new research that models the cell wall.

CRISPR/Cas technology could enable early diagnosis of devastating citrus disease

Penn State and U.S. Department of Agriculture scientists have used cutting-edge CRISPR/Cas technology to develop a diagnostic test that could enable early diagnosis of citrus greening, or Huanglongbing, a serious disease that threatens worldwide citrus production.

Mutant corn gene boosts sugar in seeds, leaves, may lead to breeding better crop

An abnormal build up of carbohydrates — sugars and starches — in the kernels and leaves of a mutant line of corn can be traced to one misregulated gene, and that discovery offers clues about how the plant deals with stress.

Little crop of horrors

An international team of researchers has received a grant from the Human Frontier Science Program to investigate how carnivory-related genes, such as those involved in digestion, could help crops not only avoid pests, but also thrive in low-nutrient environments.

Plant Biology Students Help Solve Mystery of Turfgrass "Memory"

Poa annua, or annual bluegrass, a turfgrass species commonly found on golf course putting greens around the world, possesses transgenerational memory, “remembering” whether its parent was mowed or not mowed, according to a new study by Penn State researchers.

Silencing the alarm

An enzyme in the saliva of certain insects prevents their food plants from warning neighboring plants of an attack.

Newly discovered trait helps plants grow deeper roots in dry, compacted soils

A previously unknown root trait allows some cereal plants to grow deeper roots capable of punching through dry, hard, compacted soils, according to Penn State researchers, who suggest that harnessing the inherited characteristic could lead to crops better able to deal with a changing climate.

Discovery of chemical clue may lead to solving cacao's black pod rot mystery

The finding of relatively high levels of the antimicrobial compound clovamide in the leaves of a disease-resistant strain of cacao has significant implications for breeding trees that can tolerate black pod rot, according to Penn State researchers who conducted a novel study.