Entries by Mary Williams

Resistant tomato restricts colonization and invasion by the pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum at four organismal levels (J Exp Bot)

Ralstonia solanacearum is a pathogenic bacterium that infects many important crop species, including tomato. Following invasion into the roots, the bacteria move upwards into the shoot and cause dramatic wilting. Previous studies have identified moderately and highly resistant lines. Here, Planas-Marquès et al. used luminescent bacteria and a grafting method to investigate how the genetic […]

Medicago-Sinorhizobium-Ralstonia  co-infection reveals legume nodules as pathogen confined infection sites developing weak defenses (Curr. Biol.)

The pathogenic bacterium Ralstonia solanacearum enters roots through wounds and also at root tips. It can also infect legume nodules. Benezech et al. investigated how this infection occurs, and how it is affected by and affects nitrogen fixation. The authors found that nodules are as permissive of Ralstonia infection as root tips, and that this […]

High-frequency random DNA insertions upon co-delivery of CRISPR-Cas9 ribonucleoprotein and selectable marker plasmid in rice (Sci Reports)

Genome editing through CRISPR/Cas9 holds so much promise for plant breeders, including potentially the ability to overcome the public’s displeasure with conventional GMOs. Still, the gene-editing RNAs and enzymes must get into the plant cell in order to work. Banakar et al. have compared three methods in terms of both the efficiency of gene editing […]

Plant Science Research Weekly: January 10

Review. Diatom molecular research comes of age:  Model species for studying phytoplankton biology and diversity Diatoms are photosynthetic eukaryotes and contribute substantially to global carbon fixation. They are distantly related to green plants, having shared the same primary endosymbiotic event, although they subsequently underwent additional secondary endosymbioses. There are over 100,000 species of diatoms, of […]

Plant Physiology welcomes 26 new Assistant Features Editors

At the beginning of 2018 Plant Physiology initiated a program to introduce several promising early-career scientists to the editorial board and engage their expertise in assessing and writing about research published in the journal. Over the past two years these scientists brought their passion for science to the journal, communicating to our readers each month […]

Review: The nanoscale organization of the plasma membrane and its importance in signaling – a proteolipid perspective (Plant Physiol)

Ample evidence shows that rather than being homogenous, plasma membrane lipids and proteins form distinct nanodomains. Jallais and Ott review plant plasma membrane nanodomains, and their important contributions to receptor-mediated signaling. The authors discuss methods for the study of membrane nanodomains, and their function and composition including the roles of flotillins and plant-specific remorins.  Lipids, […]

Opinion. A return to the wild: Root exudates and food security (Trends Plant Sci)

My dog is a fantastic companion, but it’s obvious he could never fend for himself; domestication has eliminated his ancestral survival skills. Likewise, most crop plants thrive under human care, but have lost many of the traits that would help them survive in harsh conditions. Preece and Peñuelas write a compelling article pointing out that […]

Review: Tomato fruit water accumulation and solute metabolism under water shortage (J. Exp. Bot.)

Deficit irrigation is water-conserving strategy in which a growing plant is given just enough but never too much water. Previous studies have shown myriad physiological changes caused by deficit irrigation including decreased growth rate and shoot:root ratio, and also a lower fruit water content. Here, Hou et al. review tomato fruit quality grown under deficit […]

Review: Genebank genomics bridges the gap between the conservation of crop diversity and plant breeding (Nature Genetics)

Crop diversity is fundamental to safeguarding global food security. The high-yielding, input-responsive cultivars developed post-green revolution led to the replacement of traditional landraces that harbour beneficial genes and alleles governing biotic and abiotic stress resistance and nutritional quality improvement. Genebanks conserve these invaluable plant genetic resources (PGRs) for future crop improvement. The review by Masher […]