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Source: Stephen Welch, 785-532-7236, welchsm@k-state.edu
News release prepared by: Erinn Barcomb-Peterson, 785-532-6415, ebarcomb@k-state.edu

Thursday, Jan. 15, 2009

NEWS TIP: K-STATE CONTRIBUTES TO RESEARCH THAT COULD HELP SCIENTISTS UNDERSTAND HOW PLANTS RESPOND TO CLIMATE CHANGE; RESULTS IN THE JOURNAL SCIENCE EXPRESS

MANHATTAN -- Researchers from Kansas State University contributed to a $5 million study of plant responses to varying climates. The results appear in the journal Science online feature Science Express at:
http://www.sciencemag.org/sciencexpress/recent.dtl

The study, led by researchers at Brown University, sought to predict the consequences of genetic variation and climate on a particular plant species, Arabidopsis thaliana. This understanding could help scientists optimize plant breeding and cultivation strategies now and as climates change.

The K-State team contributed by collecting weather data from sensors placed close to the plants at the ground surface and by co-developing computer models to fit the data. K-State researchers featured in the Science Express article include Mary Knapp, associate agronomist; Stephen Welch, professor of agronomy; Judith Roe, formerly of the Division of Biology; and Erika Charbit, former postdoctoral researcher in the Division of Biology and department of agronomy.

Also contributing to the project are Sanjoy Das, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering; Doina Caragea, assistant professor of computer and information science; and William Hsu, associate professor of computer and information science.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation.