Getting more out of Nature: genetic toolkit finds new maximum for crop yields

Outlet: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

November 2, 2014

Scientists at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory announced a new way to dramatically increase crop yields by improving upon Mother Nature’s offerings. A team led by Associate Professor Zachary Lippman, in collaboration with Israeli colleagues, has discovered a set of gene variations that can boost fruit production in the tomato plant by as much as 100%. Plant breeders will be able to combine different gene variants among the set to create an optimal plant architecture for particular varieties & growing conditions. The set of mutations will enable farmers to maximize yield in tomatoes & potentially many other flowering plants, including staple crops like soybeans.