Arabidopsis Uses Defense Metabolites to Mediate Drought Tolerance

Brassica plants, such as broccoli, produce specialized metabolites that benefit humans by inducing anti-cancer defenses and providing flavor. These same compounds benefit the plant by attacking insects. Recent work however is showing that the plant also uses these flavor/anti-cancer compounds to defend against drought. The metabolite, glucoraphanin (4-methylsulfinylbutyl glucosinolate), is the focus of a new…

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Fields on Fire: Alternatives to Crop Residue Burning in India

A new article in the journal Science – “Fields on Fire: Alternatives to Crop Residue Burning in India” – addresses the environmental problems associated with crop burning in India, and presents alternatives such as changing cropping systems and adopting different management practices. “Alternatives to crop residue burning in India are critical because of serious air…

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UC Davis Partners with DEA-Approved Company to Conduct Cannabis Research: Researchers will seek to better understand the science of cannabis

Researchers at the University of California, Davis, have partnered with a federally compliant pharmaceutical company to analyze the chemical and biological profiles of cannabis for the benefit of law enforcement, health care providers and scientific professionals. The agreement with Biopharmaceutical Research Company (BRC), which is registered with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, is among the…

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Bringing Food Safety and Plant Breeding Together Can Create Solutions (Podcast with Maeli Melotto, UC Davis)

The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) and the University of California, Davis, teamed up to tackle an important topic: food safety. At the Breeding Crops for Enhanced Food Safety Conference in June, Alex Martin sat down with Maeli Melotto, one of the creators and organizers of the event and an associate professor in…

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Breeding Crops for Enhanced Food Safety

Plant breeders and food safety experts conducted a two-day conference at UC Davis (June 5–6, 2019) to discuss issues relevant to food safety, including control of microbial contamination in produce throughout the food chain (seeds, field production, pre- and postharvest, packaging, distribution, marketing). Maeli Melotto, a UC Davis Plant Sciences professor who focuses on plant-microbe…

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Investing in 101 Futures: UC Davis Seed Biotechnology Center Partnership with African Orphan Crops Consortium Prepares Underutilized Crops for Success

Crops like corn and rice have relished in research on breeding crop varieties for high yield and disease resistance. Traditional African crops, such as spider plant, finger millet, bambara groundnut or allanblackia, remain highly nutritious in a limited set of varieties but inaccessible. They are “orphaned” into low yielding varieties and limited markets. The UC…

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Plant Breeding Academy Addresses Global Food Needs

To address the global shortage of plant breeders and enable future food security, the UC Davis Plant Breeding Academy (PBA) offers a professional development certificate program in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Africa.  “The Plant Breeding Academy, organized through the Seed Biotechnology Center at UC Davis, builds breeding skills for industry personnel, enabling them…

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