Johan Willemsen
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Rescooped by Johan Willemsen from plant cell genetics
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Intragenesis and cisgenesis as alternatives to transgenic crop development - Holme - 2013 - Plant Biotechnology Journal - Wiley Online Library

Intragenesis and cisgenesis as alternatives to transgenic crop development - Holme - 2013 - Plant Biotechnology Journal - Wiley Online Library | Johan Willemsen | Scoop.it

One of the major concerns of the general public about transgenic crops relates to the mixing of genetic materials between species that cannot hybridize by natural means. To meet this concern, the two transformation concepts cisgenesis and intragenesis were developed as alternatives to transgenesis. Both concepts imply that plants must only be transformed with genetic material derived from the species itself or from closely related species capable of sexual hybridization. Furthermore, foreign sequences such as selection genes and vector-backbone sequences should be absent. Intragenesis differs from cisgenesis by allowing use of new gene combinations created by in vitro rearrangements of functional genetic elements. Several surveys show higher public acceptance of intragenic/cisgenic crops compared to transgenic crops. Thus, although the intragenic and cisgenic concepts were introduced internationally only 9 and 7 years ago, several different traits in a variety of crops have currently been modified according to these concepts. Five of these crops are now in field trials and two have pending applications for deregulation. Currently, intragenic/cisgenic plants are regulated as transgenic plants worldwide. However, as the gene pool exploited by intragenesis and cisgenesis are identical to the gene pool available for conventional breeding, less comprehensive regulatory measures are expected. The regulation of intragenic/cisgenic crops is presently under evaluation in the EU and in the US regulators are considering if a subgroup of these crops should be exempted from regulation. It is accordingly possible that the intragenic/cisgenic route will be of major significance for future plant breeding


Via Jean-Pierre Zryd
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Rescooped by Johan Willemsen from plant cell genetics
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IJMS | Free Full-Text | Activation of Defense Mechanisms against Pathogens in Mosses and Flowering Plants

IJMS | Free Full-Text | Activation of Defense Mechanisms against Pathogens in Mosses and Flowering Plants | Johan Willemsen | Scoop.it

During evolution, plants have developed mechanisms to cope with and adapt to different types of stress, including microbial infection. Once the stress is sensed, signaling pathways are activated, leading to the induced expression of genes with different roles in defense. Mosses (Bryophytes) are non-vascular plants that diverged from flowering plants more than 450 million years ago, allowing comparative studies of the evolution of defense-related genes and defensive metabolites produced after microbial infection. The ancestral position among land plants, the sequenced genome and the feasibility of generating targeted knock-out mutants by homologous recombination has made the moss Physcomitrella patens an attractive model to perform functional studies of plant genes involved in stress responses. This paper reviews the current knowledge of inducible defense mechanisms in P. patens and compares them to those activated in flowering plants after pathogen assault, including the reinforcement of the cell wall, ROS production, programmed cell death, activation of defense genes and synthesis of secondary metabolites and defense hormones. The knowledge generated in P. patens together with comparative studies in flowering plants will help to identify key components in plant defense responses and to design novel strategies to enhance resistance to biotic stress


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Rescooped by Johan Willemsen from Bioinformatics Software: Sequence Analysis
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RNAseq Annotation Issues - A Good Post by Stuart Brown - Homologus

RNAseq Annotation Issues - A Good Post by Stuart Brown - Homologus | Johan Willemsen | Scoop.it
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Via Mel Melendrez-Vallard
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Scooped by Johan Willemsen
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Comparing the yields of organic and conventional agriculture

Johan Willemsen's insight:

Numerous people have stated that organic agriculture performs just as good as conventional agriculture. A recent paper from Nature (May 2012) shows that many organic systems can perfectly compete with conventional yields in some cases, but often do not. 

 

A remarkable result from this paper (which is to the contrary to several other papers) is that organic agriculture in developed countries performes 20% less than conventional, but that in developing countries this is 43% less than conventional farming. 

 

However, the most pronounced and important insight from this paper is to my knowledge that yield differences exists between the two systems, but that they are dependend on the context of the system. 

 

In making such comparisons, what should be compared with what? Do we just look at the yield, take into account pest management strategies, and what system do we compare to eachother. 

 

Making generalized conclusions about convetional versus organic, is therefore a risky thing and should be avoided by scientists and organizations. 

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