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Latest and Breaking Agriculture News

Location matters in the lowland Amazon
(Carnegie Institution) You know the old saying: Location, location, location? It turns out that it applies to the Amazon rainforest, too. New work from Carnegie's Greg Asner illustrates a hidden tapestry of chemical variation across the lowland Peruvian Amazon, with plants in different areas producing an array of chemicals that changes across the region's topography.

Climate engineering may save coral reefs, study shows
(University of Exeter) Geoengineering of the climate may be the only way to save coral reefs from mass bleaching, according to new research.

Team pinpoints genes that make plant stem cells, revealing origin of beefsteak tomatoes
(Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory) A team of scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory has identified a set of genes that control stem cell production in tomato. Mutations in these genes explain the origin of mammoth beefsteak tomatoes. More important, the research suggests how breeders can optimize fruit size in potentially any fruit-bearing crop.

An evolutionary heads-up
(University of Veterinary Medicine -- Vienna) Animals with large brains are considered to be more intelligent and more successful than those with smaller brains. Researchers from the Vetmeduni Vienna and Stockholm University have provided the first experimental evidence that large brains provide an evolutionary advantage. Large-brained female fish have a higher survival rate than those with small brains when faced with a predator, although brain size surprisingly did not influence male survival. The results were published in Ecology Letters.

Estuaries protect Dungeness crabs from deadly parasites
(University of Southern Denmark) Parasitic worms can pose a serious threat to the Dungeness crab, a commercially important fishery species found along the west coast of North America. The worms are thought to have caused or contributed to the crash of the crab fishery of central California during the last half century. New research shows that infected crabs can rid themselves of parasites by moving into the less salty water of estuaries. Low salinity kills the worms creating a parasite refuge for the crabs.

Study uses farm data to aid in slowing evolution of herbicide-resistant weeds
(University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences) Although researchers and industry personnel have made recommendations to slow the evolution of herbicide-resistant weeds, an understanding of the patterns and causes of the resistance has been limited.A recently published study by weed scientists at the University of Illinois and USDA-ARS, looking at glyphosate-resistant waterhemp, is providing valuable evidence that points to management practices as the driving force behind herbicide resistance, and that herbicide mixing, as opposed to herbicide rotation, is the most effective tool in managing resistance.

Celiac-safe wheat and preemie pain detection among new LSDF awards
(Life Sciences Discovery Fund) Celiac disease-safe wheat, premature infant pain detection, and new medicines to fight flu and cancer are among the ideas to receive $2.9 million in funding from Washington's Life Sciences Discovery Fund.

Seven projects to make progress on ethics and global food security in five years
(Johns Hopkins Medicine) Johns Hopkins experts lead an international group that has issued an ambitious five-year agenda to tackle some of the most complex ethical issues involved in ensuring the global population has enough sustainably produced safe and nutritious food.

Agricultural fires in Angola, West Africa
(NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center) The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer on NASA's Aqua satellite collected this natural-color image which detected dozens of fires burning in southwestern Africa on May 21, 2015.

New model predicts fish population response to dams, other ecological factors
(NOAA Northeast Fisheries Science Center) Researchers have developed a model to assess how dams affect the viability of sea-run fish species that need to pass dams as they use both fresh and marine waters during their lifetimes. NOAA's Northeast Fisheries Science Center and Greater Atlantic Regional Fisheries Office have partnered on this project to test how varying passage efficiency at dams related to survival rates for these species, using a model of endangered Atlantic salmon as a case study.

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