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The Beginning of Everything -- The Big Bang - YouTube

The Beginning of Everything -- The Big Bang - YouTube | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

"How did everything get started? Has the universe a beginning or was it here since forever?"

The origin of the universe explained in six short minutes.

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Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education)
Hooks and hot topics for university teachers and students
Curated by Mary Williams
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Rescooped by Mary Williams from Plants and Microbes
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ABC News: Canola virus wipes out crops in South Australia (2014)

ABC News: Canola virus wipes out crops in South Australia (2014) | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

Scientists say an outbreak of beet western yellows virus is one of the worst cases ever seen in Australia.


Early estimates suggest up to 10,000 hectares of canola have been affected, in South Australia's lower north, mid north and lower mallee regions. The virus is transported by green peach aphids, which have thrived in the state's recent warm and humid weather. Ag consultant Mick Faulkner says agronomists felt like they'd been "blind-sided" after not being able to work out what had been affecting crops. "It took everyone a fair bit of time to realise that we weren't killing the aphids," Mr Faulkner said. "Green paddocks are now brown. "Those that have been affected, I have grave fears that they won't yield anything at all."


Virus halted for now - The South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) says it's now testing samples to confirm how the virus is spreading and where else it might turn up. Pulse pathologist Jenny Davidson says with cooler weather, the virus-transmitting aphids aren't moving and at the moment the best thing growers can do is "nothing", "We expect that the spread of this virus would've stopped for now, so there's no point people going out and spraying aphids now," she says. "It's also important growers ascertain it actually is the virus causing problems in their canola crops, there may be other things going on as well. "The potential risk is what these aphids will do in spring time. "We're not sure whether or not pulse crops are at risk but we'll have that information back well and truly before the spring time flights." Ms Davidson says the virus isn't uncommon, but what is unusual is the extent of damage and infection being seen. She says it's taken everyone by surprise. "I've never seen this level of damage from any virus in crops," Ms Davidson says. "It's the magnitude of what we're dealing with that is totally un-expected."


Via Kamoun Lab @ TSL
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Milestones in Plant Science - add your suggestions to the developing timeline hosted by ASPB

Milestones in Plant Science - add your suggestions to the developing timeline hosted by ASPB | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

What are the big events that shaped our understanding of plants? This site is starting to collect major milestones in the discipline, but needs your help. Send in your suggestion!

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The Scientist Magazine® profile of Bruce Ames: Mutagens and Multivitamins

The Scientist Magazine® profile of Bruce Ames: Mutagens and Multivitamins | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
Not one to shy away from controversy, Bruce Ames has pitted himself against industry groups, environmentalists, and his peers through his work identifying DNA mutagens. And he’s not done yet.
Mary Williams's insight:

This is a wonderful profile of an inspiring scientists. When I was an undergraduate at Berkeley, second year life science students were invited to a meeting in which members of each subdiscipline explained their field of study to us. Bruce Ames talked to us about Biochemistry and I signed up to be a Biochem major the next day.

You can see his infectious enthusiasm and humor in this article. 


"When I feel like exercise, I run my experiments, I skip my controls, and I jump to conclusions."

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California drought: America’s golden state runs dry - and its farmers are struggling to survive

California drought: America’s golden state runs dry - and its farmers are struggling to survive | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
At Harris Farms in California’s Central Valley, it is not difficult to discern the effects of the state’s continuing drought. Fields that in previous years would have been lined with tomatoes or broccoli now contain nothing but brown earth. Around two thirds of the farm’s 14,000 acres are fallow, and for the first year since it started to grow salad leaves more than three decades ago, the farm has planted not a single head of lettuce.
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Electric Defence (Plant) - YouTube

GLUTAMATE RECEPTOR-LIKE genes mediate leaf-to-leaf wound signalling Nature 500, 422--426 (22 August 2013) doi:10.1038/nature12478 http://www.nature.com/natur...
Mary Williams's insight:

Edward Farmer's lab has been studying the systemic signals that arise from insect herbivory, including electrical signals. See the link also to their paper showing the involvement of Glutamate Receptor Like Genes in transduction of thsi signal.

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Secrets of root development revealed

Secrets of root development revealed | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

One of the speakers at the SEB 2014 conference was mentioned by the BBC!

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Chronobiology: Past, Present & Future

Chronobiology: Past, Present & Future | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
25 Years of the Kay Laboratory (1989–2014) BY PRATEEK TRIPATHI ASPB Student Ambassador, University of Southern California “The greatest thing of the past
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Have you heard ?

Have you heard ? | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

25th International Conference on Arabidopsis Research (ICAR 2015)
Paris, France, July 5-9, 2015

Mary Williams's insight:

Image source:

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/53/Eiffel_tower_from_trocadero.jpg

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Project overview: ENSA - Engineering Nitrogen Symbiosis for Africa

Project overview: ENSA - Engineering Nitrogen Symbiosis for Africa | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

Really enjoyed today's talk by Giles Oldroyd on the molecular basis of root nodule symbiosis establishment, which has the goal of (ultimately) introducing this capacity to grains- see the proejct overview at ENSA https://www.ensa.ac.uk/

A few links to the biology:
Synthetic biology approaches to engineering the nitrogen symbiosis in cereals.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24687978

A GRAS-Type Transcription Factor with a Specific Function in Mycorrhizal Signaling http://www.cell.com/current-biology/abstract/S0960-9822%2812%2901146-3

Nuclear calcium signaling in plants http://www.plantphysiol.org/content/163/2/496.full

Activation of Calcium/Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinase http://www.plantcell.org/content/25/12/5053.long

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Hans Lambers on soil phosphate acquisition in impoverished soil (AoB Blog)

Hans Lambers on soil phosphate acquisition in impoverished soil (AoB Blog) | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

From the AoB Blog: This week guest author Charlie Haynes is AoB Blog’s roving reporter at the EPSO/FESPB plant biology Europe conference.   Hans Lambers is the Winthrop Professor at the University of Western Australia. His research focuses on mineral nutrition of native Australian plants and crop and pasture legumes.

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BBSRC: "Great British bioscience pioneers" – Professor Richard Cogdell

BBSRC: "Great British bioscience pioneers" – Professor Richard Cogdell | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

"Continuing our series of articles on Great British bioscience pioneers, we take a look at the career of Professor Richard Cogdell, Director of the Institute of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology at the University of Glasgow and his pioneering research on photosynthetic bacteria, whose intricate processes could be harnessed for the production of clean, green energy."

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Auxin Biosynthesis

Auxin Biosynthesis | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
Yunde Zhao (2014) Auxin Biosynthesis. The Arabidopsis Book: Vol. , No. , pp. null. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1199/tab.0173
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Frontiers in Plant Biology: An introduction to the analysis of shotgun metagenomic data

Frontiers in Plant Biology:  An introduction to the analysis of shotgun metagenomic data | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

A nice introduction to how metagenomic data can be analyzed and used - good for teaching (useful reading for me too- I learned a lot!)

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Washington Post: Scientists turn to public to help pay for research

Washington Post: Scientists turn to public to help pay for research | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
In over three decades of studying ferns, Duke University professor Kathleen Pryer has received her share of grant money. But for her newest project, she’s getting help from a retired nurse in Canada and a 17-year-old in Arkansas.
Mary Williams's insight:

Remember that Azolla genome crowd-funding idea we shared a while ago? It got funded! Read more here.

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Fujitsu Lettuce? In Japan, idled electronics factories find new life in farming

Fujitsu Lettuce? In Japan, idled electronics factories find new life in farming | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
Struggling to compete with rivals in South Korea or China in businesses like televisions and smartphones, a range of Japanese electronics giants are converting idled factories to agriculture.
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Robert Hooke's Micrographia (audio-annotated flipbook)

Robert Hooke's Micrographia (audio-annotated flipbook) | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

Here's a nice way to display a 500 year old book!

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What Plants Talk About - Documentary - YouTube

When we think about plants, we don't often associate a term like "behavior" with them, but experimental plant ecologist JC Cahill wants to change that. The U...
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I think I've already posted this, but just heard a talk by Consuelo de Moraes who studied the interaction between parasitic dodder and its host http://www.sciencemag.org/content/313/5795/1964

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Simulated root section including all cell types using RootSlice - YouTube

 video created by Jouke Postma and Jie Wu property of Penn State
Mary Williams's insight:

Jonathan Lynch at Penn State's lab makes amazing videos (credit to Jouke Postma also on many of them). Check out more ontheir youtube page https://www.youtube.com/user/RootsLabPSU/videos

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Why we should trust scientists

Why we should trust scientists | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
Many of the world's biggest problems require asking questions of scientists -- but why should we believe what they say? Historian of science Naomi Oreskes thinks deeply about our relationship to belief and draws out three problems with common attitudes toward scientific inquiry -- and gives her own reasoning for why we ought to trust science.
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Renato P. dos Santos's curator insight, June 30, 6:34 AM

Or has Science become a repressing ideology? (Feyerabend)

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BBC - BBC Radio 4 and Kew Gardens to explore history of plant science - Media centre

BBC - BBC Radio 4 and Kew Gardens to explore history of plant science - Media centre | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
This summer BBC Radio 4 is to broadcast a major new series that will explore our changing relationship with plants, from Carl Linnaeus and the birth of modern botany right through to the modern day.
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A chemical-free paper : The Sceptical Chymist

A chemical-free paper : The Sceptical Chymist | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

This is great!

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PNAS: Hit-and-run transcriptional control by bZIP1 mediates rapid nutrient signaling in Arabidopsis

PNAS: Hit-and-run transcriptional control by bZIP1 mediates rapid nutrient signaling in Arabidopsis | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

"Cellular signals evoke rapid and broad changes in gene regulatory networks. To uncover these network dynamics, we developed an approach able to monitor primary targets of a transcription factor (TF) based solely on gene regulation, in the absence of detectable binding. This enabled us to follow the transient propagation of a nitrogen (N) nutrient signal as a direct impact of the master TF Basic Leucine Zipper 1 (bZIP1)

Unexpectedly, the largest class of primary targets that exhibit transient associations with bZIP1 is uniquely relevant to the rapid and dynamic propagation of the N signal. Our ability to uncover this transient network architecture has revealed the “dark matter” of dynamic N nutrient signaling in plants that has previously eluded detection.."

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Coffee Crop Disease, Spurred by Climate Change, Threatens Latin America's Economic Foundation

Coffee Crop Disease, Spurred by Climate Change, Threatens Latin America's Economic Foundation | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
Coffee is one of Latin America's major exports, sustaining independent farmers in rural areas as well as corporate bankers in metropolitan areas. But changing climate patterns have exaggerated plagues and droughts in the region, and this has produced less than desirable conditions for coffee production.
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Frontiers | The role of the cell wall compartment in mutualistic symbioses of plants

Frontiers | The role of the cell wall compartment in mutualistic symbioses of plants | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it
Plants engage in mutualistic interactions with microbes that improve their mineral nutrient supply. The most wide-spread symbiotic association is arbuscular mycorrhiza (AM), in which fungi of the order Glomeromycota invade roots and colonize the cellular lumen of cortical cells. The establishment of this interaction requires a dedicated molecular-genetic program and a cellular machinery of the plant host. This program is partially shared with the root nodule symbiosis (RNS), which involves prokaryotic partners collectively referred to as rhizobia. Both, AM and RNS are endosymbioses that involve intracellular accommodation of the microbial partner in the cells of the plant host. Since plant cells are surrounded by sturdy cell walls, root penetration and cell invasion requires mechanisms to overcome this barrier while maintaining the cytoplasm of the two partners separate during development of the symbiotic association. Here, we discuss the diverse functions of the cell wall compartment in establishment and functioning of plant symbioses with the emphasis on AM and RNS, and we describe the stages of the AM association between the model organisms Petunia hybrida and Rhizophagus irregularis.

Via Christophe Jacquet
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2014 - Dr. Rajaram - The World Food Prize -

2014 - Dr. Rajaram - The World Food Prize - | Plant Biology Teaching Resources (Higher Education) | Scoop.it

"The eminent plant scientist Dr. Sanjaya Rajaram, born in India and a citizen of Mexico, will be honored as the 2014 World Food Prize Laureate for his scientific research that led to a prodigious increase in world wheat production – by more than 200 million tons – building upon the successes of the Green Revolution.  

His breakthrough breeding technologies have had a far-reaching and significant impact in providing more nutritious food around the globe and alleviating world hunger. Dr. Rajaram succeeded Dr. Norman Borlaug in leading CIMMYT's wheat breeding program, and developed an astounding 480 wheat varieties that have been released in 51 countries on six continents and have been widely adopted by small- and large-scale farmers alike."

Mary Williams's insight:

Nice, inspring article on this year's World Food Prize winner, Dr. Sanjaya Rajaram

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