26.03.2013 - British researchers have found that one single protein seems to control resistance against multiple herbicides of cereal crops weeds.
Multiple-herbicide resistance (MHR) in black-grass and annual rye-grass is a global threat for agriculture, leading to loss of chemical weed control in cereal crops. Until now, it was only poorly understood why MHR is associated with an enhanced ability to detoxify xenobiotics. Assuming an analogy with multiple drug resistance, which occurs in human tumours, researchers from York University and Syngenta now report they have found a possible explanation.
When they searched in black-grass and annual rye-grass for a plant homologue to the MDR causing phi glutathione S transferase (GSTP1) they found an enzyme that also showed both detoxification and signalling. When expressed in Arabidopsis thaliana, the protein termed GSTF1 led to multiple herbicide resistance in the model organism and showed a similar secondary metabolism pattern as the weeds. Those were not associated with a differential gene expression pattern but directly caused by GSTF1.
When they applied the GSTP1 blocker 4-chloro-7-nitro-benzoxadiazole to the weeds, the MHR masterswitch was blocked. They conclude that overexpression of GSTF1 orchestrates multi-herbicide resistance in grass weeds and that targeting the protein is a promising approach to regain weed control in cereal crops.
16.12.2014 Two consortia combined of 144 European companies, research institutes and universities have been selected for funding by the EIT in the areas of health and raw materials. Both clusters are set to acquire €1.1bn over the next seven years.
10.12.2014 When it comes to the biggest investors in Research and Development (R&D) Swiss pharma top dogs Novartis and Roche have defended their positioning among the top ten companies worldwide – according to a recently published EU study.
05.12.2014 Austrian contract research company VTU has entered into a development and commercialisation agreement with US company RCT. The partners want to combine both companies' Pichia pastoris protein production technologies under VTU's roof.
03.12.2014 Danish biotech pharma Ascendis has successfully completed a €48m Series D financing round. The funding is expected to support its late-stage clinical trials to push its lead drug into Phase III trials.