Since the launch of the Mutant Millets schools outreach project in the St Louis area, some exciting and novel discoveries of mutant phenotypes have been made with high school students.
Students at Clayton High School in St Louis, MO, who participated in Mutant Millets during the Fall 2014 semester, observed forked panicles from the mutant family 00671, a phenotype that had yet to be observed by scientists (Fig 1). Scientists at the Danforth Plant Science Center are especially interested in any genes that may influence panicle formation.
In the fall 2014 semester, students at Fort Zumwalt East High School in St Peters, MO, who participated in Mutant Millets, recorded unusually larger seed sizes from plants in the mutant family 00671 during a visit to their classroom by Danforth staff (Fig 2). This phenotype is particularly interesting to the scientists at the Danforth Plant Science Center, and had yet to be observed in that family. A gene that controls seed size may be particularly interesting to scientists interested in increasing grain yields.