Biotech Updates

Scientists Work to Improve Mineral Uptake in Plants

December 4, 2013

Scientists from the University of Missouri, the University of Nevada, and the University of California San Diego sought to know which genes control the nutrient uptake in plants. In a five-year collaboration, the group measured the amounts of 14 elements in both plant seeds and leaves of mutant Arabidopsis thaliana plants in different soil types (salty, alkali, heavy metal, and normal).

The researchers also disabled a different gene in each plant, allowing them to tell if the disabled gene affected uptake of minerals into the seeds or leaves. The teams found that 11 percent of genes influence proteins relevant to the nutritional content in seeds. Soil types also played a role in the significance each gene's impact.

See the University of Missouri's news release at