Current Photosynthesis News and Events

Current Photosynthesis News and Events, Photosynthesis News Articles.
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Parasitic plants conspire to keep hosts alive
The plant that encourages kissing at Christmas is in fact a parasite, and new research reveals mistletoe has an unusual feeding strategy. When two mistletoes invade the same tree, they increase photosynthesis to get the nutrients they need, essentially sharing the tree and causing it less harm. (2021-02-23)

HKU planetary scientists discover evidence for a reduced atmosphere on ancient Mars
The transition from a reduced planet to an oxidized planet is referred to as the Great Oxidation Event or GOE. This transition was a central part of our planet's evolution, and fundamentally linked to the evolution of life here -- specifically to the prevalence of photosynthesis that produced oxygen. Planetary geologists at HKU have discovered that Mars underwent a great oxygenation event of its own -- billions of years ago, the red planet was not so red. (2021-02-16)

Out of this world: U of I researchers measure photosynthesis from space
In school, we learned that plants use sunlight to synthesize CO2 and water into products like carbohydrates. Now, a U of I research team is finding another use for photosynthesis. By using satellite data to measure plants' CO2 intake and fixation, scientists can generate insights into ecosystem health; specifically, how our agricultural systems will react to an erratic climate and increasingly carbon-filled atmosphere. (2021-02-16)

Quantum leaps in understanding how living corals survive
A new imaging technique has been developed to improve our ability to visualize and track the symbiotic interactions between coral and algae in response to globally warming sea surface temperatures and deepening seawaters. (2021-02-15)

Finding the best targets to improve crop yield by following CO2 journey inside the leaf
A team of scientists have measured the relative importance of the different obstacles that carbon dioxide (CO2) encounters in its voyage from the atmosphere to the interior of plant cells, where it is converted into sugars. This research leading method provides much needed information that will help to increase the yield of important food crops such as cowpea, soybean and cassava. (2021-02-11)

WVU biologists uncover forests' unexpected role in climate change
New research from West Virginia University biologists shows that trees around the world are consuming more carbon dioxide than previously reported, making forests even more important in regulating the Earth's atmosphere and forever shift how we think about climate change. (2021-02-08)

Potentially toxic plankton algae may play a crucial role in the future Arctic
As the sea ice shrinks in the Arctic, the plankton community that produces food for the entire marine food chain is changing. New research shows that a potentially toxic species of plankton algae that lives both by doing photosynthesis and absorbing food may become an important player in the Arctic Ocean as the future sea ice becomes thinner and thinner. (2021-02-03)

A revolutionary approach to increasing crop yield in rice
Overexpression of a plasma membrane proton pump gene in rice increases nutrient uptake and stomatal opening, promising solutions to food supply and environmental problems. (2021-02-03)

Improved model estimates impact of ozone on soy crops
The impact of ozone on soybean production can be predicted more accurately thanks to improvements to a computer modelling system. (2021-02-01)

A small protein in bacteria overlooked up to now
Researchers identify an essential factor involved in the ordered recycling of phycobilisome light-harvesting structures (2021-01-29)

Ecologists conducted a novel study on vegetation transpiration from a global network of 251 sites
An ecologist from RUDN University together with colleagues from 14 countries compared three methods for estimating ecosystem transpiration in a study. In the first ever research with such a comprehensive data-set, the team used land-atmosphere water vapor flux data of collected at 251 locations all over the planet, from Australia to Greenland. The outcome of the research help to understand the role of plants in the global water and carbon cycles in the current predicament of global warming. (2021-01-28)

Even machines need their greens
Image that products could be strengthened with the same living materials that provide nutrients to strengthen trees. Professor Qiming Wang's research lab is one of the first to infuse 3-D printer ink with living material. The material has potential for greater strength, to be flexible and self-heal. (2021-01-27)

How climate caprices can trigger plants
Climate change may challenge organismal responses through not only extreme cues. An uncommon combination of benign cues - warm and short days - can also trigger reactions such as misregulations of leaves. (2021-01-27)

Development of rapid method for extraction of natural blue chromophore from cyanobacteria
A research group at Toyohashi University of Technology succeeded in developing an efficient and rapid extraction method for Phycocyanobilin (PCB) by treating cyanobacterial cells with alcohol under high-temperature and high-pressure conditions. They also demonstrated that this method can be applied to the isotopic labeling of PCB and its reconstitution with photoswitch protein. This technique is expected to lead to the development of new functional foods and medicines and the structural elucidation of various PCB-binding photoswitches. (2021-01-26)

Genetic sequence for parasitic flowering plant Sapria
A team of Harvard-led researchers presented the most complete genome yet assembled of one of the major Rafflesiaceae lineages, Sapria himalayana. (2021-01-22)

Earth to reach temperature tipping point in next 20 to 30 years, new NAU study finds
Postdoc Katharyn Duffy led an international team that looked at 20 years of data from throughout the world and found that record-breaking temperatures are contributing to a significant decrease in plants' ability to absorb human-caused carbon emissions. (2021-01-13)

Earth's terrestrial ecosystems may transition from carbon sinks to carbon sources within decades
Rising temperatures could trigger Earth's terrestrial ecosystems to transition from carbon sinks to carbon sources in the next 20 to 30 years, according to data from the world's largest continuous carbon monitoring network. The researchers suggest that up to half of land ecosystems could reach this tipping point - when plants begin to release carbon into the atmosphere. (2021-01-13)

Like plants do: non-classical photosynthesis by earth's inorganic semiconducting minerals
Although much is known about biological photosynthesis, its evolutionary origin remains a mystery. In a recent study, scientists from Peking University, China, investigate the interaction between sunlight and minerals abundant on the Earth surface and propose novel mechanisms behind non-classical photosynthesis. Their work sheds light on the chemical history of our planet and suggests a way in which photosynthesis might have evolved from minerals. (2021-01-12)

Scientists develop a cheaper method that might help create fuels from plants
Scientists have figured out a cheaper, more efficient way to conduct a chemical reaction at the heart of many biological processes, which may lead to better ways to create biofuels from plants. (2021-01-08)

Possible explanation for more efficient maize growth
Plant researchers at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) have investigated the transport of compounds in maize. They focused on the mechanism used to transport the products of photosynthesis for further distribution in the plant through its phloem loading pathways. In the current edition of the journal ''The Plant Cell'', they describe how this mechanism has potentially created a special evolutionary advantage for maize. (2021-01-08)

Orange is the new 'block'
New research from Washington University in St. Louis reveals the core structure of the light-harvesting antenna of cyanobacteria or blue-green algae -- including key features that both collect energy and block excess light absorption. Scientists built a model of the large protein complex called phycobilisome that collects and transmits light energy. Phycobilisomes allow cyanobacteria to take advantage of different wavelengths of light than other photosynthetic organisms. The study, published Jan. 6, 2020 in Science Advances, yields insights relevant to future energy applications. (2021-01-06)

Flag leaves could help top off photosynthetic performance in rice
A team from the University of Illinois and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) found that some flag leaves of different varieties of rice transform light and carbon dioxide into carbohydrates better than others, potentially opening new opportunities for breeding higher yielding rice varieties. (2020-12-29)

New energy conversion layer for biosolar cells
A research team from the Ruhr-Universität Bochum, together with colleagues from Lisbon, has produced a semi-artificial electrode that could convert light energy into other forms of energy in biosolar cells. The technique is based on the photosynthesis protein Photosystem I from cyanobacteria. The group showed that they could couple their system with an enzyme that used the converted light energy to produce hydrogen. (2020-12-21)

CRISPR helps researchers uncover how corals adjust to warming oceans
The CRISPR/Cas9 genome editing system can help scientists understand, and possibly improve, how corals respond to the environmental stresses of climate change. Work led by Phillip Cleves--who joined Carnegie's Department of Embryology this fall--details how the revolutionary, Nobel Prize-winning technology can be deployed to guide conservation efforts for fragile reef ecosystems. (2020-12-21)

Light signal emitted during photosynthesis used to quickly screen crops
University of Illinois researchers have revealed a new approach to estimate the photosynthetic capacity of crops to pinpoint their top-performing traits and speed up the plant screening process, according to a new study in the Journal of Experimental Botany(2020-12-21)

Land ecosystems are becoming less efficient at absorbing CO2
Land ecosystems currently play a key role in mitigating climate change. The more carbon dioxide (CO2) plants and trees absorb during photosynthesis, the process they use to make food, the less CO2 remains trapped in the atmosphere where it can cause temperatures to rise. But scientists have identified an unsettling trend - as levels of CO2 in the atmosphere increase, 86 percent of land ecosystems globally are becoming progressively less efficient at absorbing it. (2020-12-18)

Can water saving traits help wine survive climate change?
Climate change is expected to make many grape-growing regions too hot and dry to produce high-quality wine from traditional varieties. But scientists at the University of California, Davis, have found that wine grape varieties from regions that are more prone to stress have traits that could help them cope with climate change. (2020-12-17)

Engineers go microbial to store energy, sequester CO2
By borrowing nature's blueprints for photosynthesis, Cornell University bioengineers have found a way to efficiently absorb and store large-scale, low-cost renewable energy from the sun - while sequestering atmospheric carbon dioxide to use later as a biofuel. (2020-12-15)

Bio-inspired lanthanide-transition metal cluster for efficient overall water splitting
A bio-inspired lanthanide-transition metal cluster as oxygen-evolving center anchored on P-doped graphitic carbon nitrides for efficient photocatalytic overall water splitting was demonstrated. Mechanistic investigation shows synergistic effects of lanthanide ion and variable-valence Co ions in the oxygen-evolving reaction. This work not only prepares a synthetic model of bio-inspired oxygen-evolving center but also develops an avenue to design efficient catalysts for overall water splitting by coupling bio-inspired clusters and photoactive supports. (2020-12-10)

Carbon fertilization effects are declining worldwide, limiting their role in climate change mitigation
The widely observed carbon fertilization effects on plant photosynthesis worldwide are declining, researchers report in a new study. (2020-12-10)

The greening of the earth is approaching its limit
Vegetation has a key role in mitigating climate change because it reduces the excess CO2 that we humans emit into the atmosphere. Just as when sportsmen and women are doped with oxygen, plants also benefit from the large amounts of CO2 that accumulate in the atmosphere. If more CO2 is available, they photosynthesize and grow more, which is called the fertilizing effect of CO2. (2020-12-10)

In temperate trees, climate-driven increase in carbon capture causes autumn leaves to fall sooner
For decades, scientists have expected that the shedding of leaves from temperate trees will get later and later under ongoing climate change. (2020-11-26)

Which factors trigger leaf die-off in autumn?
Researchers at ETH Zurich have identified a self-regulating mechanism in European deciduous trees that limits their growing-season length: Trees that photosynthesise more in spring and summer lose their leaves earlier in autumn. (2020-11-26)

Research creates hydrogen-producing living droplets, paving way for alternative future energy source
Scientists have built tiny droplet-based microbial factories that produce hydrogen, instead of oxygen, when exposed to daylight in air. (2020-11-25)

Phytoplankton disturbed by nanoparticles
Products derived from nanotechnology are efficient and highly sought-after, yet their effects on the environment are still poorly understood. A research team from the University of Geneva have investigated the effects of nanosilver, currently used in almost 450 products for its antibacterial properties, on the algae known as Poterioochromonas malhamensis. The results show that nanosilver disturb the alga's entire metabolism. Its membrane becomes more permeable, the cellular ROS increases and photosynthesis is less effective. (2020-11-25)

Princeton scientists solve the mystery behind an enigmatic organelle, the pyrenoid
Princeton researchers Shan He, Martin Jonikas, and colleagues have discovered how Rubisco holoenzymes assemble to form the fluid-like matrix of the algal pyrenoid, an organelle that mediates the incorporation of carbon dioxide into sugars. The study detailing the group's findings was published November 23, 2020 in the journal Nature Plants. (2020-11-25)

Some Amazon rainforest regions more resistant to climate change than previously thought
Is the Amazon rainforest as sensitive to water stress as what the current models have been showing? Columbia Engineering researchers found that the models have been largely over-estimating water stress in tropical forests. While models show that increases in air dryness greatly diminish photosynthesis rates in certain regions of the Amazon rainforest, observational data results show the opposite: in certain very wet regions, the forests instead even increase photosynthesis rates in response to drier air. (2020-11-20)

Synthesis study demonstrates phytoplankton can bloom below Arctic sea ice
Researchers used historical scientific studies, along with contemporary observations employing autonomous floats and robotic vehicles, to demonstrate that phytoplankton blooms occur under Arctic Ocean sea ice. Previously, scientists had assumed that was impossible due to low-light conditions, particularly when ice cover was thicker before climate change. The synthesis of more than half a century of research on under-ice blooms suggests that modern computer models underestimate the contribution of microscopic algae to the Arctic carbon cycle. (2020-11-19)

Faster detection of photocatalyst-generated oxygen has big implications for clean energy
In the future, hydrogen produced from sunlight and water using photocatalysts could provide a source of clean energy. Collaboration between researchers at Japanese universities has led to the development of a method to detect the oxygen produced from this water-splitting reaction 1000 times faster. This new method can be utilized to improve our understanding of artificial photosynthesis' reaction mechanisms and could contribute towards the development and large-scale implementation of photocatalyst technology for producing hydrogen fuel. (2020-11-18)

C4 rice's first wobbly steps towards reality
An international long-term research collaboration aimed at creating high yielding and water use efficient rice varieties, has successfully installed part of the photosynthetic machinery from maize into rice. (2020-11-12)

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