ARDMORE, Okla. — Noble Research Institute assistant professor Larry York, Ph.D., recently received the inaugural Annals of Botany Plants (AoBP) Early Career Open Science (ECOS) award.
The AoBP is an open access journal that provides an outlet for plant-focused research that is scientifically sound. Recently launched by the AoBP, the ECOS award was created to highlight researchers who have dedicated considerable efforts to advancing the goals and ideals of open science.
Open science promotes practices that enable more people to engage directly with research, including publishing open access journal articles that are free to view, sharing raw data and analysis methods, and encouraging education and outreach. Traditionally, journal articles require a paid subscription and datasets are not commonly shared. Open science represents a movement toward greater transparency and inclusion, and accelerates research so that the world will have better and faster outcomes.
In 2017, York joined Noble Research Institute, establishing Noble’s Root Phenomics Laboratory. He has been practicing open science since his arrival. All publications from his laboratory have been published open access, datasets have been made available online and two open-source software packages have been released. In addition, York has organized several workshops focusing on how to measure roots.
York’s laboratory works to advance root biology by developing new technologies to measure roots and what they are doing in the soil. His team studies how root systems intake water and mineral nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, which are needed for plant growth. The deeper and more active the root system, the more water and nutrients it can provide.
York’s team works with Noble plant breeders, agronomists and economists to generate new crop varieties with efficient root systems and demonstrate their utility with on-farm trials.
Better roots can help increase yield, reduce fertilizer use and pollution, and promote soil health, all of which have the ability to lower associated expenses for farmers and ranchers.