Photorespiration is complex, energy-expensive operation that many plants must perform during photosynthesis and which drastically suppresses their yield potential. Researchers from the University of Illinois and US Department of Agriculture ARS (Agriculture Research Service) report in the journal Science that crops engineered with a photorespiratory shortcut are 40% more productive in real-world agronomic conditions.
The discovery shines new light on the complex metabolic network for carbon utilization in cyanobacteria, while opening the door to better ways of producing chemicals from carbon dioxide or plant biomass.
The new finding is likely to foster manufacture of pure amylose for industrial applications. Amylose can be used as a gelling agent for sauces and puddings, and for the production of biodegradable packaging.