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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: NOVEL WEED MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS: A BASIS IN UNDERSTANDING BUD AND SEED DORMANCY

Location: Sunflower Research

Title: Molecular biology approaches to weed management

Author
item Chao, Wun

Submitted to: Zacao Kexue (Weed Science)
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: March 19, 2012
Publication Date: March 25, 2012
Citation: Chao, W.S. 2012. Molecular biology approaches to weed management. Zacao Kexue (Weed Science). 30:1-10.

Interpretive Summary: Global climate change appears to be favorable for invasive weed development and spread because invasive weeds are able to profit by the altered climatic conditions. To worsen the matter, herbicide-resistant weeds have become a severe threat in modern agricultural systems due to the extensive use of herbicides and the widespread use of herbicide resistant crops. Therefore, novel techniques are needed to effectively alleviate current and future weed problems. Molecular tools have been applied to study weeds for preventive measures. However, much less effort has been devoted to directly weaken the capacity of weeds to thrive/survive using molecular technologies. This article thus introduced potential approaches of using molecular technologies for weed control.

Technical Abstract: Global climate change appears to be favorable for invasive weed development and spread because invasive species in general are proficient at succeeding in new environments. To worsen matters, herbicide-resistant weeds have become a severe threat in modern agricultural systems due to the extensive use of herbicides and the widespread use of herbicide resistant crops. Therefore, novel techniques are needed to effectively alleviate current and future weed problems. Molecular biology is the study of molecular interactions between DNA, RNA, and proteins. Molecular tools have been used in weed science to determine mechanisms of how weeds become resistant, origins of resistance, spread of weed genotypes and gene flow, ecological and evolutionary development of weedy characteristics, etc. Information obtained from these studies will contribute in proactive planning and applying environmentally sustainable solutions to weed management. Molecular tools also have the potential to be applied directly for weed control. Several technologies such as metagenomics, virus-induced gene silencing, and transgenic female-sterility are some good examples of how these techniques may be used to develop novel control measures.

Last Modified: 9/10/2014
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