New research published this week identifies the genomic features that might have made domestication possible for corn and soybeans, two of the world’s most critical crop species.
The research, published Wednesday in the peer-reviewed academic journal Genome Biology, has implications for how scientists understand domestication, or the process by which humans have been able to breed plants for desirable traits through centuries of cultivation. The researchers drew on vast amounts of data on the genomes of corn and soybeans and compared particular sections of the genomes of wild species and domestic varieties, noting where the genomes diverged most markedly.
Our Kevin Falk was recently awarded both the Graduate Student Leadership and Research awards from the Iowa State Graduate and Professional Student Senate. He was the only graduate student across the university to win both awards. Congratulations, Kevin!
Dr. Irving Carlson joined the agronomy family as a plant breeder in 1960. He passed away February 23, 2019 at the age of 92.
After getting his bachelor's and masters at Washington State University, he earned his PhD in plant breeding at the University of Wisconsin in 1955. He spent four years at North Carolina State University before coming to Ames.
A key focus of his work was the development of new varieties of orchard grass and other cool season forage crops. In addition, Irving advised many graduate students from around the country and around the world.
As a child, I remember feeling hungry most of the time. Growing up in rural Tanzania, I walked to school barefoot and most of the time had one meal a day. After school, I helped my mother with various farming chores, including feeding the animals, weeding, harvesting and planting. I often heard my mother express concerns about the lack of ways to protect our crops from drought, pests and diseases. I wanted to help my mother but was too young to understand what the solution might be.
AMES, Iowa – The immense number of possible hybrids that can be created from inbred corn plants can leave plant breeders wondering where to start when attempting to produce new crop varieties with desirable traits. But new research from an Iowa State University agronomist shows how advanced data mining techniques can enhance the efficiency of the process.
The seven are among 416 researchers from around the world who make up this year’s class of AAAS Fellows, the association announced today. The new fellows are being recognized “because of their efforts toward advancing science applications that are deemed scientifically or socially distinguished.” Dr. Yu joins the limited company of only 40 other faculty at Iowa State University as a AAAS Fellow.