The genome of one of the world's key commercial crops, the oil palm, has been sequenced. The plant's oil is used in many food and household products, but has caused controversy because large areas of rainforest have been cleared to make way for plantations. Through deciphering the crop's DNA, researchers have identified the genes that could help to produce a more sustainable crop. The work is published in Nature.

A single gene in the oil palm could hold the key to making more oil from fewer plants -- and could possibly help preserve Asian rain forests from destruction.

Orion Genomics launches clinical diagnostics lab, granted CLIA certification

Researchers pinpoint a gene that could be used to boost yields and reduce competition between forests and oil palms a duo of papers just published in Nature moves a step in that direction, suggesting that breeders could further boost oil palm yields, and in that way significantly reduce the competition between rainforests and palm oil plantations around the world.