Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Early agricultural piracy informs the domestication of rice

Date:
June 9, 2011
Source:
Public Library of Science
Summary:
Researchers are casting new light on the origins of rice. By reconciling two theories, scientists show that the domestication of rice occurred at least twice independently but with extensive "borrowing" between the two subspecies.

The origins of rice have been cast in a new light by research publishing in the open-access journal PLoS Genetics on June 9, 2011. By reconciling two theories, the authors show that the domestication of rice occurred at least twice independently but with extensive "borrowing" between the two subspecies.

Indica and japonica are, respectively, the southern and northern varieties of rice and they are major staple crops in Asia. Whether they share a single origin of domestication or were domesticated independently twice interests both historians and biologists, and the two views had seemed mutually exclusive. However, researchers from Sun Yat-Sen University and Beijing Institute of Genomics (BIG) and the University of Chicago, are now suggesting that these two views may both be correct, depending on the traits or genes being discussed.

Using new-generation sequencing technology, Suhua Shi, Chung-I Wu, and their research teams studied the kinship of rice by examining the 50,000 or so genes in the rice genome. For most of the genes, indica and japonica are indeed no closer to each other in kinship than each is to wild rice, supporting the more popular view that the two cultivars were independently domesticated. However, when the gene regions for traits influenced by artificial selection were examined, indica and japonica appear to share a surprisingly strong kinship.

In light of this new data, the story of rice domestication may need to be revisited. Early northern and southern farmers may have cultivated rice independently but it seems that they also borrowed desired traits extensively from rice farmed by others, resulting in the opposing kinships reported. This begs the question as to whether intellectual piracy has been with us since humans first became engaged in agricultural production.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Public Library of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ziwen He, Weiwei Zhai, Haijun Wen, Tian Tang, Yu Wang, Xuemei Lu, Anthony J. Greenberg, Richard R. Hudson, Chung-I Wu, Suhua Shi. Two Evolutionary Histories in the Genome of Rice: the Roles of Domestication Genes. PLoS Genetics, 2011; 7 (6): e1002100 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1002100

Cite This Page:

Public Library of Science. "Early agricultural piracy informs the domestication of rice." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110609173712.htm>.
Public Library of Science. (2011, June 9). Early agricultural piracy informs the domestication of rice. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110609173712.htm
Public Library of Science. "Early agricultural piracy informs the domestication of rice." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110609173712.htm (accessed September 17, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Some Tobacco Farmers Thrive Amid Challenges

Some Tobacco Farmers Thrive Amid Challenges

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) The South's tobacco country is surviving, and even thriving in some cases, as demand overseas keeps growers in the fields of one of America's oldest cash crops. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Given Rare Glimpse of 350-Kilo Colossal Squid

Scientists Given Rare Glimpse of 350-Kilo Colossal Squid

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Scientists say a female colossal squid weighing an estimated 350 kilograms (770 lbs) and thought to be only the second intact specimen ever found was carrying eggs when discovered in the Antarctic. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Squid experts in New Zealand thawed and examined an unusual catch on Tuesday: a colossal squid. It was captured in Antarctica's remote Ross Sea in December last year and has been frozen for eight months. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

Ivorians Abandon Monkey Pets in Fear Over Ebola Virus

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Since the arrival of Ebola in Ivory Coast, Ivorians have been abandoning their pets, particularly monkeys, in the fear that they may transmit the virus. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
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