In 10 seconds? As global temperature change keeps posing a threat to food security, scientists have found a gene that gave an evolutionary advantage to an Asian rice variety. The discovery could be a game-changer to breed thermotolerant plants.

What’s the discovery? In a recent study, scientists sifting through over 4200 rice samples have identified a gene named the SLG1 (Slender Guy 1) encoding cytosolic tRNA 2-thiolation protein 2 (RCTU2) which assists rice plants to withstand high temperatures. They showed that 90% of the plants that possess the SLG1 gene survived after heat treatment while 84% of the plants lacking this gene did not survive under the same conditions.

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