Recent Posts

Review: Molecular mechanisms involved in functional macroevolution of plant transcription factors (New Phytol)

Transcription factors (TFs) are very important actors through which evolution can operate. In every organism and system studied, starting with the seminal work of Jacob and Monod, they’ve been shown to be potent regulatory proteins. Here, Romani and Moreno review the contributions of plant transcription…

Review: The genetic control of succulent leaf development (COPB)

Succulence provides plants with the ability to store water and is therefore commonly associated with plants from arid environments such as the familiar Aloe and Agave. Here, Heyduk reviews the genetic control of leaf succulence. Succulence usually involves large, highly vacuolated cells, but not surprisingly,…

The Arabidopsis NOT4A E3 ligase promotes PGR3 expression and regulates chloroplast translation (Nature Comms)

Pentatricopeptide repeat (PPR) domain containing proteins are nuclear encoded with functions in the chloroplast, but regulation of PPR gene expression in the nucleus before import to the chloroplast has not been well studied. Bailey et al. identified and characterized the ubiquitin ligase NOT4A and its…

Cold translation: Ribosome-mediated translation inhibition senses cold stress in plants (bioRxiv)

A drop in ambient temperature adversely affects plant growth and development. While the primary molecular pathway in response to cold stress involves the expression of CBF transcription factors, Guillaume-Schöpfer and colleagues found cold stress-induced inhibition of ribosome translation machinery…

BONZAIs emerge as nodal regulators of osmotic stress responses (Curr. Biol.)

Plants launch their response to osmotic stress with a sudden spike in cytosolic Ca2+ levels, which subsequently leads to the accumulation of the phytohormone abscisic acid (ABA). This further initiates a chain of events including closure of stomata, large-scale transcriptional changes, retardation of…

Ethylene response factors 15 and 16 trigger jasmonate biosynthesis in tomato during herbivore resistance (Plant Physiol)

Crop damage and yield losses caused by herbivores have become major threats to global food security. Upon wounding and herbivory, plants rapidly accumulate high levels of jasmonates (JA). However, the mechanism underlying how JA biosynthesis is triggered by herbivore attack remains unclear. It is therefore…

Seed enhancement technologies to improve germination and emergence of Australian native Poaceae (Seed Sci. Res.)

One of the most significant limitations in seed-based restoration projects is that some native species exhibit low recruitment in the field. As a result, various seed enhancement technologies (SETs) are being developed to improve germination and seedling emergence by facilitating access to nutrients…

Horizontal genome transfer by cell-to-cell travel of whole organelles (Sci. Advances)

Textbooks tell us that eukaryotic cells acquired first mitochondria and later plastids through assimilation and retention of useful prokaryotes, but textbooks also imply that these were one-off occurrences that happened long ago. In the past several years, evidence has been accruing that genomes from…

Evidence for phloem loading via the abaxial bundle sheath cells in maize leaves (Plant Cell)

Every student knows that in a C4 plant like maize, photosynthetic carbohydrates are synthesized in the bundle sheath cells that surround the vein. These carbohydrates are then transported into the phloem for delivery to other tissues. Previous studies have identified SWEET (Sugars Will Eventually be…