Soybean seed hardness demystified: key genes and networks uncovered

Soybean seed hardness, a key factor in consumer acceptance and vegetable soybean quality, has been elucidated through a comprehensive study. Researchers identified the genetic and molecular mechanisms influencing this trait, focusing on differential gene expression during seed development. The discovery of the GmSWEET2 gene as a significant regulator of hardness offers a pathway to enhance soybean texture, potentially revolutionizing the market with customized varieties to suit diverse consumer preferences.

Combining math and entomology to predict, mitigate soybean aphid outbreaks

Iowa State researchers are developing mathematical models to simulate soybean aphid population dynamics over a growing season with a wide array of stressors, including droughts and floods. The project received a USDA grant earlier this year and is in collaboration with entomologists at Ohio State University.

Scientists Discover New Antibiotic in Tropical Forest

Scientists from Rutgers University and around the world have discovered an antibiotic produced by a soil bacterium from a Mexican tropical forest that may help lead to a “plant probiotic,” more robust plants and other antibiotics. Probiotics, which provide friendlier bacteria and health benefits for humans, can also be beneficial to plants, keeping them healthy and more robust. The new antibiotic, known as phazolicin, prevents harmful bacteria from getting into the root systems of bean plants, according to a Rutgers co-authored study in the journal Nature Communications.