Danforth Center to Lead Research on Sorghum for Bioenergy

Cindy Zimmerman

The Danforth Plant Science Center with principal investigator Andrea Eveland will lead a multi-institutional project to study sorghum as a versatile bioenergy crop, and its response to drought. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Genome-Enabled Plant Biology program supports the three-year $2.7 million project for the Determination of Gene Function program.

Sorghum is the fifth most widely grown cereal crop worldwide and the third largest in the U.S. It has natural resilience to drought stress and excessive heat, which is attractive for developing bioenergy feedstocks for production on marginal lands. Eveland’s project explores the gene networks underlying this remarkable stress resilience in sorghum and seeks to define the functions of critical genes and how they are regulated. Drought tolerance is a complex trait and understanding its regulation in the broader context of the whole plant and its environment will require advanced approaches in genetics, genomics, phenotyping and gene editing.

bioenergy, biofuels, Research, sorghum