Review: Development of organs for nutrient uptake in parasitic plants and root nodule symbiosis

This review by Cui et al. makes the interesting comparison between the developmental processes involved in root nodule formation and haustoria formation by roots of parasitic plants. As the authors observe, both are organs that are produced for the purpose of nutrient acquisition through “intimate relationships” with other organisms, and initiation of each starts with the perception of signals released by the partner (haustorium-inducing factors or Nod factors). In the article, the authors elaborate further on the comparison between these two pathways of organogenesis. For example, both types of organ are derived from lateral roots, and formation of both is suppressed by environmental nitrogen and enhanced by the action of auxin and cytokinins. Finally, the authors suggest that a better understanding of these processes could provide opportunities to engineer synthetic organs. (Summary by Mary Williams @PlantTeaching) Curr. Opin. Plant Biol. 10.1016/j.pbi.2023.102473