Researchers at the Salk Institute’s Harnessing Plants Initiative have established a five-year, $6.2 million collaboration with Dr. Nadia Shakoor and her team at the Danforth Center to identify and develop sorghum plants that can better capture and store atmospheric carbon.
Research shows options with high yield and low water use
Four Texas A&M College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Department of Soil and Crop Sciences plant breeding program development projects have been funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, NIFA. These programs are aimed at enhancing sorghum, corn, peanut and wheat cultivars for farmer use.
The researchers used radioactive and stable isotopes of carbon, RNA-seq of metabolically important enzymes, and immunolocalization of Rubisco to show that the sterile spikelet collects carbon from the air and carries out photosynthesis while the awn does not.
With increasing drought conditions in the Texas High Plains, researchers test sorghum and pearl millet as alternatives to corn
Saltwater intrusion means farmers must adapt their management practices.
A new study illustrates the concept of a domestication triangle, in which human genetics interact with sorghum genetics and the environment to influence the traits farmers select in their crops. The concept gives a more complete systemic picture of domestication.