Entries by Mariana Antonietti

The fate of scent in insect- vs. wind-pollinated flowers ($) (Ann. Bot)

Flower traits (mainly flower colour, position, shape, size, reward and scent) in present-day plants are the result of past selection pressures. Among these traits, scent is a crucial component mediating pollinator attraction, and is often greatly reduced in abiotic-pollinated plants. Wang et al. characterize the volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in very closely-related species from the genus […]

Best of both worlds: a free living insect with an endophytic-like feeding strategy (eLIFE)

Endophytic insects, which spend much of their life inside of plant tissues (e.g., leaf miners and gall-forming insects) are well-known for manipulating plant host physiology to their advantage, unlike free living herbivore insects whose game plan relies on their ability to move and find the most nutritious part of the plant or the less defended […]

Phytosensors at home ($) (Science)

In this review Stewart et al. address the potential use of houseplants as biosensors for harmful agents in the home environment, taking advantage of phytosensor technology already in use in agricultural settings. The authors propose the design of genetically modified plants that carry a synthetic promoter built to sense a specific toxic element and induce […]