Recent Posts

Arabidopsis Framework Model version 2 predicts the effects of circadian clock misregulation

Experimental or "wet lab" biologists look at data, develop a hypothesis to explain it, test the hypothesis, and repeat. Through these approaches, our understanding of life is continually being expanded and refined. A complementary approach involves developing mathematical models to explain observations,…

Concentration-dependent transcriptional switching through a collective action of cis-elements (Sci. Adv.)

One of the well-known molecular pathways that regulate plant development is the one formed by the homeobox transcription factor WUSCHEL (WUS) and the secreted peptide CLAVATA 3 (CLV3). In the shoot apical meristem (SAM), WUS expression is constrained to the organizing center where it maintains the stem…

PeTriBERT : Augmenting BERT with tridimensional encoding for inverse protein folding and design (bioRxiv)

The AlphaFoldDB database recently made headlines by predicting the three-dimensional protein structure of millions of proteins based on their primary amino acid sequence. Most of these models remain to be tested, but it’s a place to start. Here, Dumortier et al. add an important complementary tool…

Machine learning algorithms predict soil seed bank persistence from easily available traits (Appl. Veg. Sci.)

Knowing whether a given plant species forms a persistent soil seed bank is essential to understanding its ecological dynamics, yet soil seed bank studies are both labor-intensive and time-consuming. One could argue that models should help predict this. Still, seed persistence in the soil is shaped by…

ATTED-II v11: A plant gene coexpression database using a sample balancing technique by subagging of principal components (Plant Cell Physiol)

Genes are generally expressed in concert with one another with data often represented by gene co-expression networks. Gene co-expression data may be useful in identifying genes with unknown functions and are generally utilized in exploring molecular processes occurring during normal development as well…

Systems approaches reveal that ABCB and PIN proteins mediate co-dependent auxin efflux (Plant Cell)

In plant development, advanced computer model simulations allow the understanding of the non-intuitive relations between local morphogenetic processes and global patterning. In Arabidopsis thaliana, the hormone auxin is involved in several processes of plant development. Auxin transporters play an important…

SHOOT: Phylogenetic gene search and ortholog inference (bioRxiv)

BLAST (basic local alignment search tool) is more than 30 years old, and most readers have probably had the opportunity to BLAST a sequence. BLAST takes an input sequence and searches databases for closely related sequences. However, this tool uses only sequence information to find close matches. Hypothetically,…

Guard cell endomembrane Ca2+-ATPases underpin a ‘carbon memory’ of photosynthetic assimilation that impacts on water-use efficiency (Nature Plants)

Stomatal guard cells control both carbon dioxide uptake and transpirational water loss. Guard cell control over the stomatal pore  aperture is sensitive to water status (through ABA) as well as the amount of CO2 available within the leaf air space. Several studies have indicated that stomatal aperture…

Molecular insights into the complex mechanics of plant epidermal cell walls (Science)

Primary plant cell walls are made up of three types of polysaccharides: cellulose, hemicellulose, and pectin, the orientations and interactions of which provide the cell wall with its properties. Here, Zhang et al. examined the outer wall of onion epidermal cells through atomic-force microscopy, stress-strain…