Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Uncovering Coffee Beans' Genes

Date:
June 15, 2004
Source:
USDA / Agricultural Research Service
Summary:
New, gourmet coffees might result from investigations by researchers in Hawaii. Agricultural Research Service scientists at the U.S. Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center and their Hawaii Agriculture Research Center colleagues are discovering more about the genetic makeup of this popular tropical crop.

Plant physiologist Paul Moore examines coffee trees involved in genetic studies on the Island of Oahu.
Credit: Photo by Peggy Greb -- Courtesy USDA / Agricultural Research Service

New, gourmet coffees might result from investigations by researchers in Hawaii. Agricultural Research Service scientists at the U.S. Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center and their Hawaii Agriculture Research Center colleagues are discovering more about the genetic makeup of this popular tropical crop. Their studies should benefit coffee lovers as well as coffee growers. Both research centers are located in Aiea, just outside of Honolulu.

One of the scientists' goals is to ensure that coffee's genetic diversity, or gene pool, is preserved for the future. That's because as-yet-unknown genes in today's popular commercial coffee varieties or in their wild, uncultivated relatives might hold the key to delicious new coffees for tomorrow.

The researchers examined coffee's genetic material, or DNA, to look for similarities and differences. Any dissimilarities among the species could be important. They could reveal interesting genes, such as ones that make some plants hardier or more disease resistant, or make their beans more flavorful.

The researchers analyzed Coffea arabica and C. canephora, the two most widely grown coffees in the world, and C. liberica, grown commercially in the Philippines as well as in parts of Africa. C. arabica was about 50 percent different from C. canephora and C. liberica. These differences may explain why these species vary in their resistance to pests, for example, or thrive at disparate elevations. Of the five C. arabica varieties studied, Catimor and Mokka Hybrid differed the most from each other--information that could eventually result in a better cup of coffee.

These studies are the most comprehensive genetic analyses to date of cultivated C. arabica coffees and the first to use a sophisticated laboratory technique called AFLP (amplified fragment length polymorphism). The scientists' findings were reported earlier in the journal Theoretical and Applied Genetics.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by USDA / Agricultural Research Service. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

USDA / Agricultural Research Service. "Uncovering Coffee Beans' Genes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 June 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/06/040614075601.htm>.
USDA / Agricultural Research Service. (2004, June 15). Uncovering Coffee Beans' Genes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/06/040614075601.htm
USDA / Agricultural Research Service. "Uncovering Coffee Beans' Genes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/06/040614075601.htm (accessed April 20, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Mich. Boy Unearths 10,000-Year-Old Mastodon Tooth

Mich. Boy Unearths 10,000-Year-Old Mastodon Tooth

Newsy (Apr. 20, 2014) — A 9-year-old Michigan boy was exploring a creek when he came across a 10,000-year-old tooth from a prehistoric mastodon. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home

AP (Apr. 18, 2014) — Dairy farmers and ethnic groups in Vermont are both benefiting from a unique collaborative effort that's feeding a growing need for fresh and affordable goat meat. (April 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Man Claims He Found Loch Ness Monster With... Apple Maps?

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — Andy Dixon showed the Daily Mail a screenshot of what he believes to be the mythical beast swimming just below the lake's surface. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
First Ever 'Female Penis' Discovered In Animal Kingdom

First Ever 'Female Penis' Discovered In Animal Kingdom

Newsy (Apr. 18, 2014) — Not only are these newly discovered bugs' sex organs reversed, but they also mate for up to 70 hours. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins