An EU-funded team of biologists has discovered that a single plant protein called APETALA1 (AP1) regulates over a thousand genes and helps create the tissues that go on to form its flowers. The research results could have enormous implications for the food production and plant breeding industries. If scientists can control a plant’s growing and flowering cycle, then plant biologists can grow both new varieties of food crops and as well as plants and crops that can flower and fruit throughout the year, not just in spring and summer, thereby extending worldwide growing seasons.

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