Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Global Plants: An Online Plants' 'Type Specimen' Database

Marita La Monica
Senior Manager, Marketing & Communications
151 East 61st Street
New York, NY 10065

Global Plants is a community-contributed database where worldwide herbaria can share their plant type specimens, experts can determine and update naming structures, students can discover and learn about plants in context, and a record of plant life can be preserved for future generations. The Global Plants Initiative (GPI), a collaboration of more than 270 herbaria in 70 countries, and JSTOR, a service of ITHAKA, released Global Plants a couple of months ago.

Thursday, 23 May 2013


Shubhra Verma
M.Sc Bioinformatics
Department of Bioinformatics, Birla Institute of Technology
Mesra, Ranchi, Jharkhand, India
Bioinformatics is the study of biological data using information tools. Bioinformatics is a combination of computer, mathematics algorithm and statistics with concept in life science to solve biological problem. The main task of bioinformatics is to manage and analyse the biological data. Bioinformatics has a number of applications in animal as well as in plant biology.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

International Day for Biological Diversity - 22nd May

Biocontrol: Need of the Hour in Indian Agriculture

Ritesh Kumar
Senior Research Fellow (Plant Pathology)
ICAR Research Complex for Eastern Region-Research Centre
Ranchi-834010 Jharkhand, India 
According to Cook and Baker (1983) ‘Biological control is the reduction of the amount of inoculum or disease producing activity of a pathogen accomplished by or through one or more organisms other than man’. The terms “biological control” and its abbreviated synonym “biocontrol” have been used in different fields of biology, most notably entomology and plant pathology. In entomology, it has been used to describe the use of live predatory insects, entomopathogenic nematodes, or microbial pathogens to suppress populations of different pest insects. In plant pathology, the term applies to the use of microbial antagonists to suppress diseases as well as the use of host specific pathogens to control weed populations (Pal et al., 2006). In both fields, the organism that suppresses the pest or pathogen is referred to as the biological control agent (BCA). More broadly, the term biological control may also be applied to the use of the natural products extracted or fermented from various sources. These formulations may be very simple mixtures of natural ingredients with specific activities or complex mixtures with multiple effects on the host as well as the target pest or pathogen.

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Conservation and Management of Mangroves and Coral Reefs in India

Ministry of Environment and Forests, Republic of India on Thursday (16th May 2013) through Press Information Bureau, informed that the Government seeks to protect, sustain and augment mangroves and coral reef in the country by both regulatory and promotional measures. Under the regulatory measures, the Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ) Notification (2011) and the Island Protection Zone (IPZ) Notification 2011 regulates the development activities along the Sea coast and tidal influenced water bodies.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

'Glowing Plants' : KickStart (Interview) with Antony Evans

The concept of Glowing Plants is gaining more popularity on internet and among scientific communities in the last couple of months. In this regard Indian Botanists Blog-o-Journal also published an article, Will 'Glowing Plants' Replace Street Lights? recently. A group of biologists under the project ‘Glowing Plants’, aims to create a glow-in-the-dark plant using synthetic biology techniques. Will this replace the traditional street lights with glowing plants and trees in dark in near future? Rabish Chandra member of Indian Botanists Blog-o-Journal spoke to Antony Evans, Project Manager, Glowing Plant Project to understand about their ambitious project.

Will 'Glowing Plants' Replace Street Lights?

Gangadhar Panday
Actor & short filmmaker
Author runs Babul Films to spread ecological awareness
Can you recall the glowing vegetation in Avatar, an Oscar winning sci-fi movie by James Cameroon? It is high quality digital art and graphics. Films do complement the process of invention. Imagine trees as streetlamps, potted flowers that give reading light. Well, some biologists have started a project to develop glowing plants to make this a reality. These do-it-yourself experiments and also some institutional efforts use synthetic biology and genetic engineering to commercialize glowing plants, starting with ornamental ones.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Forest Cover in India: An Analysis

Forest Cover is defined as “All lands more than one hectare in area, with a tree canopy density of more than 10 % irrespective of ownership and legal status. Such lands may not necessarily be a recorded forest area. It also includes orchards bamboo and palm.”