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New study finds corn genome can gang up on multiple pathogens at once

In a changing climate, corn growers need to be ready for anything, including new and shifting disease dynamics. Because it’s impossible to predict which damaging disease will pop up in a given year, corn with resistance to multiple diseases would be a huge win for growers.

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New genetic vulnerability to herbicide found in nearly 50 sweet and field corn lines

When a sweet corn breeder reached out in 2021 to report severe injury from the herbicide tolpyralate, Marty Williams hoped it was a fluke isolated to a single inbred line.

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The silver bullet that wasn't: Glyphosate's declining weed control over 25 years

It has been a quarter century since corn and soybeans were engineered to withstand the withering mists of the herbicide glyphosate. Initially heralded as a “silver bullet” for weed control, the modified crops and their herbicide companion were quickly and widely adopted across corn and soybean-growing regions of North America. In the years that followed, though, weeds targeted for eradication quietly fomented a rebellion. 

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In TED Talk, Long describes three photosynthetic changes that boost crop yields

In a newly released TED TalkStephen Long a University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign professor of plant biology and crop sciences, detailed his and his colleagues’ efforts to boost photosynthesis in crop plants. He described three interventions, each of which increased crop yields by 20% or more. 

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Three ACES scientists rank among world's most influential

Three researchers in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign have been named to the 2023 Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researchers list. The list recognizes research scientists and social scientists who have demonstrated exceptional influence – reflected through their publication of multiple papers frequently cited by their peers during the last decade. 

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New study indicates C4 crops less sensitive to ozone pollution than C3 crops

Ozone (O3) in the troposphere negatively impacts crop growth and development, causing significant decreases in crop yield worldwide. This airborne pollutant does not come directly from smokestacks or vehicles, but instead is formed when other pollutants, mainly nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds, react in the presence of sunlight. In an increasingly polluted atmosphere, understanding what plants are tolerant of O3 is critical to improving crop productivity and resilience.

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