Entries by Mary Williams

Advice for those selecting a PhD program

Choose a program, have a life By Samantha H. Jones (Published in Science) As I formally accepted the offer to join my Ph.D. program, the massive weight on my chest began to dissolve, my shoulders relaxed, and my headache subsided. Choosing a program had been quite the roller coaster ride, filled with uncertainty and sleepless […]

Review: Mechanosensitive ion channels ($)

Ion channels are proteins that regulate the passage of ions across membranes. Ion channels are regulated in diverse ways – some are calcium-regulated, some are pH sensitive, some are charge sensitive, and some are sensitive to mechanical stimulation i.e., membrane tension. Basu and Haswell review mechanosensitive ion channels in plants, which have been implicated in […]

A worldwide-scale relationship between leaf size and climate ($)

Leaf size varies by over 100,000-fold across the plant kingdom. Leaf area has a direct impact on tissue temperature and thus directly affects photosynthetic efficiency. Empirical observations by 19th century plant geographers described that larger leaves are usually restricted to plants growing in wet tropics; nevertheless environmental factors driving leaf size haven’t been studied at […]

Review. Fine-tuning timing: Natural variation informs the switch to flowering in Arabidopsis thaliana ($)

The transition from vegetative growth to a flower-producing reproductive state is highly regulated by environmental cues. The model plant Arabidopsis thaliana has a wide distribution throughout different habitats, so each accession has different adaptations strategies. One of the major factors that varies between accessions is the requirement and response to long periods of cold before […]

What We’re Reading: September 15th

Thanks for all the contributed paper summaries! If you’d like to summarize a paper for this series, contact Mary Williams (mwilliams@aspb.org). Special Issue of Current Biology “The Making of a Plant” Browsing the table of contents of the “The Making of a Plant” special issue of Current Biology feels like a birthday celebration; there are […]

4D root gene expression

It becomes more and more clear that regulation of complex traits and processes, such as root growth and lateral root growth, involves not only gene expression quality (which genes are expressed), quantity (how much transcript is present) and space (in which cell-type transcripts are accumulating) but also time plays an important role. Walker et al. […]

EIN2 mediates direct regulation of histone acetylation in the ethylene response

Perception of the phytohormone ethylene results in the cleavage of EIN2 and translocation to the nucleus of its C-terminal end, EIN2-C. Zhang et al. showed that EIN2-C is essential for chromatin modification that allows EIN3, the main ethylene signaling transcription factor, to transcriptionally regulate its target genes. The authors demonstrated that EIN2-C is a key […]