Researchers at Plant Research International in the Netherlands have achieved a breakthrough in the development of chrysanthemums with resistance to thrips, bringing the ecological cultivation of chrysanthemums a step closer. This is the conclusion of the thesis with which Seetharam Annadana, a Plant Research International guest member of staff from India, recently obtained his doctorate at Wageningen University. Annadana developed new techniques which make possible the genetic modification of two thirds of the available varieties of chrysanthemum. In addition, he identified better so-called promoters: genetic switches to ensure that the genes incorporated into the chrysanthemums will be sufficiently active.
With his thesis, Annadana has laid the grounds for effective genetic modification of the chrysanthemum. Researchers hope to develop chrysanthemums resistant to insects with the help of this technology. Being a major pest, thrips is generally regarded to be the main factor impeding the ecological production of chrysanthemums.
At present, the damage caused by thrips can only be adequately prevented using chemical pesticides. Consequently, various ecological practices cannot be applied, such as the use of certain biological control systems. The development of thrips-resistant chrysanthemums would entail using far less chemical pesticide, or even none at all.
Erik Toussaint | alphagalileo
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Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
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A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
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