Recent Posts

Mutations in Argonaute5 illuminate epistatic interactions of the K1 and I loci ($)

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Classic studies revealed an interesting genetic relationship between two loci that control pigmentation in soybeans seeds. Dominant alleles of the I locus suppress pigmentation through the production of small interfering RNAs that target chalcone synthase RNA (an enzyme involved in pigment production).…

Salicylic acid interferes with GFP fluorescence in vivo

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Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) is a widely-used reporter with which to analyze protein localization and expression levels. De Jonge et al. report that GFP fluorescence is greatly diminished in the presence of the hormone salicylic acid (SA), as is the fluorescence of the reporters RFP and VENUS. The…

Live Confocal Imaging of Developing Arabidopsis Flowers

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Monitoring cells and their activities in real time provides exceptional insights into their mechanisms and strategies of growth. Prunet has used live confocal imaging of Arabidopsis flowers to study the placement of floral organs and the dynamics of floral stem cells. Here, he presents a detailed protocol…

Update: Stomatal defense a decade later

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Stomatal defense, recognition of pathogens at the stomatal pore accompanied by stomatal closure to prevent their entry, was discovered ten years ago. Melotto et al. review what we’ve learned in the past decade about this key defense strategy. They discuss pathogen recognition, in which microbe-associated…

Perspective: Research priorities for harnessing plant microbiomes in sustainable agriculture

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Beneficial microbes help plants take up nutrients, confer protection against pathogens, and can even affect flowering time. Busby et al. argue for a coordinated effort between researchers and farmers to study plant microbiomes with the goal of using them to enhance productivity. The authors define and…

Review: Secrets of succulence ($)

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“Succulence is a phenomenon that has long eluded a decisive consensus definition,” begins Males in his review of the physiology and evolutionary developmental biology of succulence. Succulence can broadly be defined as the storage of water such that the plant can maintain physiological activity in…

Review: Root branching plasticity: collective decision-making results from local and global signalling

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Roots are extraordinary examples of developmental plasticity, and hundreds of papers have reported on the mechanisms by which root system architecture responds to the environment and the global nutritional status of the plant. McCleery et al. propose a model that synthesizes evidence of intrinsic, local…

Review: Ammonium as a signal for physiological and morphological responses ($)

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Ammonium is one of the major forms in which nitrogen is assimilated. Besides being a nutrient, it also acts as signal that affects gene expression and root system architecture. Some ammonium-induced genes are also induced by low pH (ammonium acidifies the apoplast), whereas others are specifically induced…

What We're Reading: April 7th

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Note: See Why We’re Writing “What We’re Reading” Review: Ammonium as a signal for physiological and morphological responses ($) Ammonium is one of the major forms in which nitrogen is assimilated. Besides being a nutrient, it also acts as signal that affects gene expression and root system…