Recent Posts

Plantae Presents: Sophia Stone and Sjon Hartman

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  Plantae Presents: Sophia Stone and Sjon Hartman Recorded April 14  Sophia Stone: The ubiquitin-proteasome system at the crossroads of abiotic and biotic stress tolerance Sophia Stone earned her PhD at York University, Canada, and completed an HFSP long-term fellowship at the University…

Review: Can smart nutrient applications optimize the plant's hidden half to improve drought resistance? (Physiol. Plant.)

The root system has three key functions: support/anchoring, uptake of water, and uptake of nutrients. Many questions remain about how roots integrate all of these functions into the architecture of a single system. Here, Bardhan et al. explore whether modifying the nutrient environment (hence root’s…

Measuring the physical-chemical effects of osmotic stress in living cells (bioRxiv)

The osmotic state of a cell is affected by internal (metabolite content) and external (water availability) factors. Recent work by Cuevas-Velazquez and colleagues describes the design of a FRET-based biosensor that allows dynamic monitoring of osmotic stress in living cells. They exploited features of…

Evolution and ecology of seed internal morphology in relation to germination characteristics in Amaranthaceae ($) (Ann. Bot.)

Seed germination, a critical life stage in a plant's life cycle, can be affected by internal seed morphology. In this exciting research, Vandelook and colleagues investigated the evolution of embryo and nutritive tissue characteristics and their relationship with the germination traits of 84 species…

Review: On tree longevity (New Phytol)

Everyone enjoys hearing about ancient trees that have been alive since various events in human history, but did you ever stop to wonder why some trees live for millennia and others don’t? If so, you’ll want to read this Tansley Review by Piovesan and Biondi. One of their first observations is that…

Convergence of sphingolipid desaturation across over 500 million years of plant evolution (Nature Plants)

If you remember your biochemistry, lipids that are saturated (without double bonds) pack more tightly and therefore have a higher melting temperature than those that are unsaturated, therefore bend and pack less tightly (think of margarine versus oil). Plants can modify their membranes in a temperature-responsive…

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,…

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…