Potato gene sequencing may lead to better crops

What’s in a potato? An international group of scientists recently produced a map of the world’s number one, non-grain food commodity – and it tells us in more detail than ever before exactly what is in a potato.

Potatoes

This is a useful development for many reasons:

  • Understanding what genes are responsible for what function will make it easier to improve the nutritional make up of this important food staple.
  •  Identifying the potato’s gene sequence can also help scientists discover ways to make the potato more resistant to disease.
  • Making potatoes easier to grow could have substantial impacts on alleviating malnourishment and poverty in developing countries where the tuber is a primary source of food energy.

Potatoes are considered an important crop around the world. Not only do they grow quickly, they also require less land than most other crops and can be grown almost anywhere. In fact, potatoes are grown on every continent except Antarctica and provide a good source of nutrition around the world.

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