College of Food, Ag & Nat Res Sci
Palmer Amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri) is one of the largest emerging threats to agricultural systems in the upper Midwest. Traditional screening methods are unable to differentiate Palmer Amaranth from related non-invasive species of Amaranth, leading to introduction through contaminated seed mixes. In response, these researchers are developing a novel, highly specific screening method to be implemented by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Genotype-by-sequencing (GBS) methods are being utilized to design genetic markers specific to Palmer Amaranth. The end result will be an assay with clear categorization for the presence/absence of Palmer Amaranth in a sample. The assay should provide reliable detection even in a seed mix composed of >98% closely-related species.
This group's research was featured on the MSI website in October 2019: Domesticating Pennycress.