New species of alga named for poet Amanda Gorman

New species of alga named for poet Amanda Gorman

“And so we lift our gaze, not to what stands between us, but what stands before us.” – Amanda Gorman, from “The Hill We Climb.”   In 2020, a group of researchers in Fay-Wei Li’s lab at the Boyce Thompson Institute (BTI) had done what many scientists dream of...
BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

On May 31, Boyce Thompson Institute welcomed 41 of the country’s brightest undergraduate students from universities around the country to experience the life of a researcher for 10 weeks. Ten more research interns from local area high schools will join the Institute...
Secrets of quillwort photosynthesis could boost crop efficiency

Secrets of quillwort photosynthesis could boost crop efficiency

The humble quillworts are an ancient group of about 250 small, aquatic plants that have largely been ignored by modern botanists. A group of researchers, led by Boyce Thompson Institute’s Fay-Wei Li, have sequenced the first quillwort genome and uncovered some secrets...
BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

On June 1, Boyce Thompson Institute welcomed 28 of the country’s brightest undergraduate students from universities around the country to experience the life of a researcher for 10 weeks. Seven more interns from local area high schools will join the Institute for six...
New Cyanobacteria Species Spotlights Early Life

New Cyanobacteria Species Spotlights Early Life

Cyanobacteria are one of the unsung heroes of life on Earth. They first evolved to perform photosynthesis about 2.4 billion years ago, pumping tons of oxygen into the atmosphere – a period known as the Great Oxygenation Event – which enabled the evolution of...
BTI Graduate Students Receive Schmittau-Novak Grants

BTI Graduate Students Receive Schmittau-Novak Grants

We would like to congratulate five BTI graduate students who are Spring 2020 Schmittau-Novak Grants Program recipients. Supported by a bequest from the estate of Jean Schmittau in honor of Joseph Novak, Cornell University Plant Biology Professor Emeritus, the...
Hornwort Genomes Could Lead to Crop Improvement

Hornwort Genomes Could Lead to Crop Improvement

Some 500 million years ago – when our continents were likely connected in a single land mass and most life existed underwater – hornworts were one of the first groups of plants to colonize land. But biologists have never understood much about the genetics of these...
BTI Researchers Publish High-Impact Nature Papers

BTI Researchers Publish High-Impact Nature Papers

We would like to congratulate a pair of BTI faculty members who recently published high-impact research papers in the prestigious research journal Nature. Frank Schroeder and colleagues discovered the first clues on how gut health influences brain health. Published on...
BTI Researchers Unlocking Hornworts’ Secrets

BTI Researchers Unlocking Hornworts’ Secrets

Hornworts are a little-studied, ancient group of plants with some very unique biology, including their methods of securing carbon and nitrogen. Unlocking these secrets may help researchers boost agricultural output and use less synthetic fertilizer, as well as provide...
BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

BTI Welcomes Summer Student Interns

On June 3, Boyce Thompson Institute welcomed 35 of the country’s brightest undergraduate students from universities around the country to experience the life of a researcher for 10 weeks. Eight more interns from area high schools will join the Institute for seven...
NSF awards BTI $1M to study plant-bacteria symbiosis

NSF awards BTI $1M to study plant-bacteria symbiosis

Professor Dr. Fay-Wei Li has been awarded a $1.1 million NSF grant to study hornwort/bacteria symbiosis. The hornwort plant relies on nitrogen-fixing soil bacteria to give it life and unlocking the secrets to how that works may help reduce agricultural dependence on...