A Gain-of-Function Polymorphism Controlling Complex Traits and Fitness in Nature

Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology and Biochemistry Mary Schuler and colleagues have published a new study in Science.

Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology Mary Schuler and colleagues have published a new study in Science.

According to Schuler, the finding's importance "lies in the fact that it spans the spectrum from ecology to molecular biology to biochemistry to computational modeling. I thinks it's the first time that anyone has mapped how a plant species has acquired a new biosynthetic ability as it has adapted to a new location. The fact that it maps to just one residue in a P450 catalytic site and one more on the protein tail is important in detailing the evolutionary mechanism operating in this example of 'plant-insect warfare'. Researchers know lots about P450 variants in human populations and how they impact drug metabolism - but the impact of P450 variations in plants has been unexplored territory (until now)."

Read the full text in Science

August 30, 2012 All News