RIPE researcher Elizabete Carmo-Silva and others have spent decades working on ways to better regular rubisco and improve its efficiency. The highlights of that research, including the knowns and key unknowns, were published in a recent review.
The full recording of RIPE Director Steve Long’s TED Talk, “Can we hack photosynthesis to feed the world,” about how three changes to photosynthesis could help reduce food insecurity and the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is now available.
A trio of researchers for the Realizing Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency (RIPE) Project 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. RIPE’s Steve Long, Lisa Ainsworth, and Tracy Lawson were all selected to this year’s list. rank in the top 1% of cited scientists in their fields in the last decade.
The University of Essex nominated RIPE for the The Higher Education Awards: International Collaboration of the Year. On September 7th it was announced that RIPE made the shortlist of nominees, and would be featured as part of the awards ceremony in early December.
“I have been lucky enough to receive a few awards throughout my career, but none is more special to me than this.” - Steve Long during his commencement address to the summer class of 2023 from the University of Essex. Long was presented with an honorary doctorate as part of the ceremony.
Research overseen by RIPE's Doug Allen discovered that plant pods support seed development and higher yields, playing a significant role in photosynthesis. Their work was recently published in Science Advances.
“Feeding the world has never been an easy job, but on a warming planet hurtling toward 10 billion inhabitants, the challenges are growing faster than the crops — agriculture is at a tipping point,” said PBS NewsHour host Miles O’Brien to kickoff a special “Tipping Point” Agriculture on the Brink” episode that features two RIPE researchers.
One hundred years of experimental biology, impactful research findings, innovative approaches, developmental workshops, and leadership in STEM has led to the SEB 2023 centenary conference. The Society for Experimental Biology (SEB) is celebrating its 100th anniversary throughout 2023, and in April announced 10 recipients of the SEB 100th Anniversary Birthday Grant. Successful applicants were awarded £500 to plan a celebration event at their own institute. Amanda Cavanagh, RIPE team member and Lecturer in the School of Life Sciences at the University of Essex, was a recipient of one of the birthday grants. She organized Celebrating Plant Science, an early career researcher event on May 24, 2023 at Essex.
A feature on the journey of RIPE Field and Greenhouse Technician Victoria Kramer, who was born at 34 weeks and has since been diagnosed with vision and speech issues, autism, and cerebral palsy.
Ending hunger worldwide may sound like a pipe dream, but researchers at the University of Illinois are making great strides in turning that wish into a reality through the genetic engineering of plants.
African Agriculural Technology Foudation (AATF) gets grant to monitor pod-borer resistant cowpea in Nigeria
The Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research has awarded AATF a grant of 250,000 Australian dollars for the dissemination and monitoring of the pod-borer resistant (PBR) cowpea variety in Nigeria.
In TIME Magazine, Bill Gates gives a brief overview of RIPE's innovative work with soybeans that lead to better quality seeds.
Climate change–induced temperature extremes could wilt corn and soybean yields, potentially causing ripples to food supplies across the world.
To improve environmental outcomes in agriculture, the 2023 Farm Bill needs to prioritize plant breeding and biotech research.
Researchers increased yield in soy plants by making them better at photosynthesis, the process that powers life. The findings hold promise for feeding a warming world.
“Hacking Photosynthesis” from Codon Magazine features the research of different bioengineers around the world who are racing to meet global food demands and highlights RIPE’s work to amp up photosynthesis.
At the recent International Congress on Photosynthesis, RIPE Deputy Director Don Ort was honored with the Jalal Aliyev Lecture Scholarship from the International Society of Photosynthesis Research.
TJ Higgins was awarded the 2021 Crawford Fund Medal for his work developing GM insect-resistant cowpeas, now approved and being grown by smallholders in Nigeria and Bangladesh.
This week, the Wolfson Foundation pledged ￡1 million to support a new state-of-the-art indoor crop growth facility, to be led by RIPE's Professor Tracy Lawson, at the University of Essex.
The Realizing Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency (RIPE) project’s communications team was one of two recipients in the inaugural year of the IGB Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Awards.
Christine Raines and Life Sciences Technical Team recognized at Essex’s Celebrating Excellence in Research and Impact Awards
University of Essex's Christine Raines was recognized as Research Champion for her outstanding work on improving photosynthesis in crops.
The heat is on: Bioscription's recent article about science’s mission in “resisting climate change with photosynthesis modified plants” highlights RIPE & our research done to adapt crops to warmer growing season temperatures.
FAMINE FIGHTERS: From the lab to the field, U of I crop scientists are engineering a new solution to world hunger
Featuring RIPE Director Stephen Long and the RIPE project in the lead article in this quarter's Illinois Alumni Magazine, writer Ryan Ross shares the story of how our crop scientists are engineering a new solution to world hunger.
By: Ryan A. Ross || Illinois Alumni Magazine
RIPE Deputy Director Don Ort was recently featured in Science Magazine’s article on a California biotech company’s aim to create fast-growing trees that can rapidly soak up atmospheric CO2 to fight climate change.
Yong-Su Jin, a professor of food science and human nutrition, is among the five University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign professors who have been named University Scholars in recognition of their excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service.
AZoCleantech speaks to Amanda Cavanagh from the University of Essex about the future of agriculture in a changing climate and how bypassing a photosynthetic glitch could help us to future-proof our food crops.
The Crawford Fund recently celebrated their Medal Awardees from 2020 and 2021, Dr. Brian Keating and Dr. TJ Higgins for their enduring contribution to global food security.
RIPE Director Stephen P. Long was announced as Expertscape’s World Expert in Climate Processes, placing him in the top 0.1% of scholars writing about Climatic Processes over the past 10 years.
The Society for Experimental Biology recently announced that Dr. Tracy Lawson has been appointed as the new Vice President of the SEB.
A team from the University of Illinois has developed a model that treats photosynthesis as a dynamic process rather than an activity that either is or is not happening.
Kris Niyogi, an Oak Ridge High School graduate, led more than 10 years of research at Berkeley, Calif., that resulted in explanations of how green plants protect themselves from excess sunlight. The work earned him election in 2016 to the National Academy of Sciences.
By: Carolyn Krause || The Oak Ridger
FUTURE-MINDS-QB to increase participation from underrepresented groups in biomedical data science and quantitative biology
The FUTURE-MINDS-QB program will provide rigorous training, a nurturing environment, and academic and professional mentorship for students from underrepresented ethnic, racial, and gender groups in quantitative biology and biomedical data sciences.
For her outstanding contributions to research on crop responses to global climate change, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist Lisa A. Ainsworth is the agency's Distinguished Senior Research Scientist of the Year for 2021.
A team of scientists proposes transformations to land management and agronomic practices to remove CO2 from the atmosphere and mitigate climate change.
ARC Centre Deputy Director Professor Susanne von Caemmerer was recently awarded the Inaugural Suzanne Cory Medal by the Australian Academy of Science.
Professors from the University of Illinois share thoughts on moving forward in a new era in the LAS news magazine.
A team from the University of Illinois and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) found that some flag leaves of different varieties of rice transform light and carbon dioxide into carbohydrates better than others.
By: Apple News
Two RIPE researchers from the USDA-ARS and Australia’s CSIRO have been elected 2020 Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
Hacking photosynthesis could grow up to 60% more food, on the same land we use today, according to an international team of researchers.
Earlier this year, the RIPE team and the University of Illinois’ Video Services media team partnered up to create a trailer that told the story of our project’s purpose and mission, earning us the Gold Telly Award in the General: Not-For-Profit category.
According to a new study published in Nature Plants, scientists from the University of Essex have resolved two major photosynthetic bottlenecks to boost plant productivity by 27% in real-world field conditions.
Researchers and innovators are looking at more resilient crops and farm animals to adapt to a world with rising temperatures and at-risk food supplies.
Coronavirus restrictions closed Canberra universities, and it's affecting industries around the world
Tory Clarke shares how COVID-19 has impacted her work on the RIPE project at The Australian National University.
The Charles Reid Barnes Life Membership Award from the American Society of Plant Biologists (ASPB) recognizes significant contributions to plant biology.
U.S. Senior Executive scientist Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young explains that being true to one's team helps to build an atmosphere of trust by acting authentically and holding each other to high standards.
Komorebi is a Japanese word that describes how light filters through leaves — creating shifting, dappled “sunflecks” that illustrate plants’ ever-changing light environment. Crops harness light energy to fix carbon dioxide into food via photosynthesis.
Climate change feels like an unprecedented global challenge. But the truth is, humanity has been here before — approximately 11,000 years ago. That’s when the last Ice Age ended.
Scientists at RIPE have developed a new mathematical computer model to understand and measure how much soybean yield is lost due to light fluctuations on cloudy versus sunny days.
Stephen Long invested as the Stanley O. Ikenberry Chair Professor of Plant Biology and Crop Sciences
Stephen Long has been invested as the Stanley O. Ikenberry Chair Professor of Plant Biology and Crop Sciences, one of the most distinguished honors at Illinois.
Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal, shines a light on women’s empowerment and ending extreme poverty
RIPE Director Stephen Long was invited to discuss the RIPE project with Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal.
A group from the University and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will break ground on a new greenhouse in Research Park.
U.S. Senator Dick Durbin visited the RIPE project and said he hopes to increase federal funding for scientific research.
By: Jim Meadows | Illinois Public Media
As part of SIN USA’s celebration of International Women’s Day 2019, SIN Chicago profiled four early-career scientists from the RIPE project.
Recent advances to address hunger through agricultural discovery will be highlighted at this year’s annual meeting of the AAAS.
After nine years of intensive trials of the Bacillus thuringiences (Bt) cowpea, Nigeria finally begins the final processes towards commercialisation.
By: Leadership, a Nigerian newspaper
If the preliminary research pans out, we may have a new way to feed the world's growing population.
By: Denise Chow | NBC News MACH
Plants are good at what they do — turning sunlight into food. However, some researchers have found the leaf world could improve, and that could have a major effect on the world’s growing population.
By: Leadership, a Nigerian newspaper
Ever since Thomas Malthus issued his dire prediction in 1789 that population growth would always exceed food supply, scientists have worked to prove him wrong.
There's a big molecule, a protein, inside the leaves of most plants. It's called Rubisco.
“That’s our goal, to make a crop that has a solution to all photosynthetic problems,” study author Amanda Cavanagh, postdoctoral researcher at the University of Illinois, told Gizmodo.
Improving crop yields to grow more food on less land is not a new challenge. But as the global population grows and diets change, the issue is becoming more urgent.
Intelligent design has triumphed where evolution has mostly failed. Biologists have boosted the biomass of tobacco by around 40 per cent by compensating for a fundamental flaw in photosynthesis.
“With changing diets, increased urbanization—70 percent of world population by 2050—and the estimated 9 to 11 billion people that will be living by the second half of this century, it is estimated that food production needs to increase by as much as 70-100 percent to supply enough food to meet demand. ” South is one of the researchers who has made what could be a major breakthrough in boosting plant production.
The yield of many staple crops could be boosted by 40 percent by a new process that adjusts the way they turn sunlight into energy.
Scientists in the U.S. have engineered tobacco plants that can grow up to 40% larger than normal in field trials.
Donald Ort's area of expertise lies in the area of photosynthesis and the ability to reengineer it to be adapted for global climate change and to improve its efficiency in agricultural situations.
A discussion on GMOs and their role within our food systems. During a roundtable conversation, experts will share details of genetic modification, including how it is developed, tested and regulated to help ensure food safety, and why farmers and scientists view this as another effective tool in the toolbox to help grow and raise our food.
Organized by: Illinois Farm Families
There’s some bad news, followed by good news, but partially countered by further bad news. The bad news is that our population is growing, and therefore our food requirements, and yet we are approaching the limits of our ability to increase crop yield with cultivation alone.
One of the great ironies of evolution is that almost all known life depends on one of the slowest and most inefficient enzymes on Earth. Now scientists have taken the largest step towards transferring a work-around from cyanobacteria into a plant.
Alge has long been known to be one of natures greatest carbon sinks, with some estimates being as high as 25% of carbon being captured into the biosphere by micro-organisms. Now researchers from The Australian National University (ANU) have engineered tiny carbon-capturing engines from blue-green algae into plants.
Can you imagine the entire population of the United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, the United Kingdom and France going hungry? You don’t need to imagine.
Welcome to the brave new world of food, where scientists are battling a global time-bomb to find new ways to feed the future.
The world population is growing rapidly, and that signals big challenges when it comes to how best to feed and fuel everyone our planet has to support. Already agriculture uses 90 percent of the world’s freshwater supply, but this will need to be stretched even further as Earth’s population increases.
Nigeria is poised to become the first country to release a genetically modified variety of insect-resistant cowpeas to farmers.
You may be aware of bottlenecks in your work environment, but did you know that even plants have bottlenecks? What if there was a productivity coach for plants? Someone who could give them all of the secrets to being faster, greener and more productive? Someone who could whisper secrets into plant DNA so that they could transform sunlight into a bigger, better plant self…to be eaten by humans of course.
Researchers at the University of Illinois are taking the basics of photosynthesis miles farther in Urbana-Champaign test plots and greenhouses — intervening in the process, through which plants use sunlight to produce energy, to create higher yields.
Don’t let the names fool you; FRED and WILMA are anything but Stone Age. FRED (field roving evaluation device) and partner WILMA (wagon for the investigation of leaves using multispectral analysis) to collectively gather much more information much faster than individual scientists clipping light sensors on leaves one at a time.
According to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, farmers will need to produce 70 percent more food by 2050 to feed an estimated 9.2 billion people.That's a problem, said Donald Ort, associate director of the RIPE project at the University of Illinois, which is exploring ways to meet this challenge.
RIPE Project Associate Director Don Ort discusses field trials that have shown increased biomass in tobacco plants from genetic modification of photosynthesis.
How do you feed 7 billion people? How do you grow that much food? That’s the question that confronts plant biologists. As the world population continues to grow, and change, researchers like RIPE Director Stephen Long are looking for more ways to grow more food, more quickly.
Throughout the growing season seemingly benign clouds pass over millions of acres of crops and inadvertently rob plants of their productivity, costing untold bushels of potential yield. Researchers recently reported in the journal Science that they have engineered a solution and increased the productivity of a crop in the field by 14- 20 percent—they believe this fix could be applied to staple food crops to help meet future global food demands.
What root vegetable is toxic eaten raw but a hunger quencher when cooked, and provides both tapioca flour and the pearls in bubble tea? This question probably will stump many Americans, but is easy for people in the developing world.
A decade ago, agricultural scientists at the University of Illinois suggested a bold approach to improve the food supply: tinker with photosynthesis, the chemical reaction powering nearly all life on Earth.
One of the longest running, loudest and bitterest debates about food in modern times centres on the relative virtues of genetically modified and organic crops.
With the world population projected to soar past the 11 billion mark by 2100, we’re going to need to find some creative new ways of putting food on the table. The latest science-powered plan to feed the world? Hacking photosynthesis.
In the next 50 years, the human population and global affluence—both major drivers of agricultural demand—are only expected to increase; researchers estimate that food production will need to grow by 60 to 120 percent by mid-century to keep pace.
Researchers are determining ways to boost crop production through expanding benefits of photosynthesis and understanding how plants react with light.
Source: Farm Futures
One of the biggest challenges of the 21st century will be figuring out how to feed our rising global population. Now, some scientists are making the radical claim that growing more food won't be enough—we literally need to hack photosynthesis.
To date, there has been no reason to use the words rice paddies and Illinois in the same sentence, but researchers at the University of Illinois have put the two together with hopes of making an impact on global supplies of the popular grain.
Scientists have used computer models to imagine a world where crops are specially bred to reflect away more light and heat, without compromising productivity.