Plant breeding evolution: How manipulating crops helped build civilization

eiy dpo v plant breeding

Humans have been breeding plants for millennia. Our ancestors began to domesticate plants (and animals) at least 10,000 years ago, allowing nomadic tribes to become stationary and form communities as they no longer had to pursue their food.

The origins of improving plants by selection can be traced back to about 1700. Perhaps the most famously know botanist was Mendel for his 1865 published research on how plant genetics were passed as traits from one generation to the next. However, it wasn’t until 1900 that his discoveries were widely recognized and adopted.

The main technology used today in plant breeding is known as mutagenesis, which dates back to the 1930s. There are two main forms of breeding new lines though mutagenesis: chemical and radiation.

Related article:  Why did Tanzania just pull the plug on its GMO crop trials?

While the observed traits from mutagenesis are random as a result of their treatment, plants observed with preferable traits are further bred for their seeds and have been the staples of plant breeding for over 80 years ….[I]nstead of random, untargeted effects, scientists [now] can [breed] plants with the precise knowledge of what is being changed allow for the more rapid development of new crop varieties.

The [European] decision to classify future plant breeding techniques as …. GMO matters …. Genome editing is a scientific extension of mutagenic technology that’s been employed in new plant variety development for over 80 years. [It] is the future of plant breeding. The question is where and who will be allowed to develop crops using these technologies.

Read full, original article: Evolution of Plant Breeding

Outbreak
Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
Talking Biotech
Genetics Unzipped
Video: Test everyone – Slovakia goes its own way to control COVID

Video: Test everyone – Slovakia goes its own way to control COVID

As Europe sees record coronavirus cases and deaths, Slovakia is testing its entire adult population. WSJ's Drew Hinshaw explains how ...
mag insects image superjumbo v

Disaster interrupted: Which farming system better preserves insect populations: Organic or conventional?

A three-year run of fragmentary Armageddon-like studies had primed the journalism pumps and settled the media framing about the future ...
dead bee desolate city

Are we facing an ‘Insect Apocalypse’ caused by ‘intensive, industrial’ farming and agricultural chemicals? The media say yes; Science says ‘no’

The media call it the “Insect Apocalypse”. In the past three years, the phrase has become an accepted truth of ...
globalmethanebudget globalcarbonproject cropped x

Infographic: Cows cause climate change? Agriculture scientist says ‘belching bovines’ get too much blame

A recent interview by Caroline Stocks, a UK journalist who writes about food, agriculture and the environment, of air quality ...
organic hillside sweet corn x

Organic v conventional using GMOs: Which is the more sustainable farming?

Many consumers spend more for organic food to avoid genetically modified products in part because they believe that “industrial agriculture” ...
benjamin franklin x

Are most GMO safety studies funded by industry?

The assertion that biotech companies do the research and the government just signs off on it is false ...
favicon

Environmental Working Group: EWG challenges safety of GMOs, food pesticide residues

Known by some as the "Environmental Worrying Group," EWG lobbies for tighter GMO legislation and famously puts out annual "dirty dozen" list of fruits and ...
m hansen

Michael Hansen: Architect of Consumers Union ongoing anti-GMO campaign

Michael K. Hansen (born 1956) is thought by critics to be the prime mover behind the ongoing campaign against agricultural biotechnology at Consumer Reports. He is an ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
Optional. Mail on special occasions.
Send this to a friend