History of Maize Is Again Rewritten On A Genetic Scale

History of Maize Is Again Rewritten On A Genetic Scale

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The humankind is completely bringing about a huge change in the ecological systems. Lately, the staple crop of many regions, the corn, is having a very complex genetic and archeological making, according to the scientists from Mexico.  The entire technique of transforming the corn’s wild ancestor into a very important food source has been going on since 9,000 years ago in Mexico. However, only a partially domesticated version was first brought into being in South America 6,500 years ago. Such crucial alterations in the development of the plant still continue. It had been thought earlier that the domestication process had taken place in the Balsas River Valley and that corn was later brought to people in the US.

The current study has helped unfold the formerly unknown and crucial second phase of domestication to have happened in southwestern Amazon region along with the domestication spreading across parts of Brazil and Bolivia as well. The maize’s global crop tag was achieved only after the Europeans stepped into America about half a millennium ago. The other American crops include potatoes, sweet potatoes, chocolate, tomatoes, peanuts, and avocados. The researchers have recently used the modernized genetic editing tools to the sequence as well as analyze the new genomes of 40 modern corn varieties along with 9 archaeological maize samples of about 1,000 years old plus 68 fresh ones and two primeval corn genomes that had already been published.

After the early stages of domestication, the people have now started taking the crops to distances right before the evolutionary method of domestication has guaranteed all the characters favored by humans. The Amazon had always been the eye for crop domestication even when the idea of partial domestication of corn, native rice, yucca, and squash was being thought. The wild predecessor of the corns is being altered into maize that the humans rely on for calories on a global scale. The reason being this study is to help the people dependent on it to understand the domestication history of maize and prop its cultivation. Jörg Kudla from the University of Münster and his team for the first time in history has created a novel crop using a wild plant in a single generation, which is similar to our modern tomato through the process of genome editing without destroying the original valuable genetic properties and adding in more crop features.

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