International consortium, including then IGC, now current ITQB NOVA PI and GREEN-IT member Jörg Becker, offers novel insight into the reproductive evolution of land plants, in new study published in Nature Plants.
Drought can have a lasting impact on the community of microbes that live in and around roots of rice plants. The results show how plants may more quickly adapt to repeated intermittent drought.
Study at the Federal University of São Paulo developed a recipe combining chickpea flour and psyllium, a plant-derived soluble fiber. The product is nourishing and rated highly by consumers in qualitative surveys.
The tiny organisms living in soil may have a greater effect on the yield and pest and disease resistance of crop plants grown in that soil than previously known.
Researchers created a simulation of a deep-sea sponge and how it responds to and influences the flow of water. The work revealed a profound connection between the sponge's structure and function, shedding light on both the basket sponge's ability to withstand the dynamic forces of the surrounding ocean and its ability to create a vortex within the body cavity "basket." These properties may help for the design of ships, planes and skyscrapers of the future.
A researcher from the University of Tsukuba, together with well-known development economists, conducted randomized trials of the System of Rice Intensification (SRI) agronomy method. Following SRI training of 5,486 Bangladeshi rice farmers, they compared trained and untrained farmers. The results showed compelling benefits for SRI's efficacy in increasing yield and profits, how it improves farming households' well-being, and its positive spillover effects in communities. This bolsters support for SRI's value, especially in the Global South.
A news study in PNAS shows soil microbes boost "hybrid vigor," a well-known phenomenon where crosses between inbred lines of corn and other crops produce offspring that outperform their parents in yield, drought resistance and other desirable qualities.
New findings from zoologists working with birds in Southeast Asia are shining fresh light on the connections between animal behaviour, geology, and evolution - underlining that species can diversify surprisingly quickly under certain conditions. Sulawesi Babblers (Pellorneum celebense), shy birds that live in the undergrowth on Indonesian islands, have begun to diverge quite significantly despite being separated geographically for mere tens of thousands of years.
In a recent article in the journal Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, a group of researchers analysed how farmland consolidation influences wild pollinator communities. They discovered that consolidation, while trying to optimise the productivity and output of the land, reduces the diversity of pollinators by 30%.
When it comes to craft beer, the flavor doesn't have to be all in the hops. As a panel of amateur beer tasters at Washington State University recently demonstrated, malted barley, the number one ingredient in beer besides water, can have a range of desirable flavors too.