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From the College of Natural Sciences
Key Switchgrass Genes Identified, Which Could Mean Better Biofuels Ahead

Key Switchgrass Genes Identified, Which Could Mean Better Biofuels Ahead

Biologists believe they are one step closer to a long-held goal of making a cheap, widely available plant a source for energy and fuel, meaning one of the next big weapons in the battle against climate change may be able to trace its roots to the side of a Texas highway.

Power Plants: Professor Billie Lee Turner supports his passion for botanical research

Power Plants: Professor Billie Lee Turner supports his passion for botanical research

Beloved professor Billie Turner helped UT become a prominent center for botanical research. Photo: Amalia Diaz

In 1953, Billie Lee Turner began his career at The University of Texas at Austin with a dream to make significant contributions to the study of plant life. He was eager to elevate UT's botany program to world-class stature, and his heart was set on further developing UT's herbarium, a scientific library of dried plant specimens used in research. Throughout Billie's lifelong career at UT, he supported this passion and ultimately established generous gifts through his estate to ensure it would thrive for future generations.

Researchers Create Largest Ever Map of Plant Proteins and Their Assemblies

Researchers Create Largest Ever Map of Plant Proteins and Their Assemblies

In a new paper in Cell, researchers at The University of Texas at Austin offer the largest survey to date of proteins in plants, examining 13 different species across 1.1 billion years of plant evolution. Their findings could have practical applications such as increasing crop yields, understanding disease and stress resistance in plants and informing biofuel production.

Scientists Uncover RNA Silencing Technique to Change Seed Size in Plants

Scientists Uncover RNA Silencing Technique to Change Seed Size in Plants

In a development with promising implications for crop farmers in the U.S. and around the world, scientists at The University of Texas at Austin have figured out how to get some plants to produce nearly one-third bigger seeds.

Searching Genomes for New Chemotherapies

Searching Genomes for New Chemotherapies

A new hunting ground for medically important compounds may be the genome of a stressed-out, poisonous evergreen shrub. Rhazya stricta is a relative of a plant currently mined for chemotherapies and holds promise for future cancer therapies, according to scientists at The University of Texas at Austin, King Abdulaziz University (KAU) in Saudi Arabia and two institutions in Canada, University of Ottawa and Université de Montréal.