Recent Posts

Mitochondrial dynamics during germination

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A seed undergoes a dramatic transformation from dried tissues into a mature plant.  This change requires energy produced by oxidative metabolism, but dry seeds contain dormant promitochondria that need to be reactivated.  Paszkiewicz et al. use bioimaging tools for an in vivo analysis of seed mitochondria…

The PLETHORA Gene Regulatory Network Guides Growth and Cell Differentiation in Arabidopsis Roots

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Due to plant cells’ shared walls and immobility, cell division, differentiation and expansion must be tightly regulated across space and time. The six members of the PLETHORA (PLT) transcription factor family distribute in gradients through the root tip and are largely responsible for its developmental…

Homeodomain protein underpins leaf shape variation in cotton ($)

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Homeodomain transcription factors are well-known as regulators of developmental patterning, including in leaves. Andres et al. examine the molecular basis behind leaf shape in cotton, particularly the Okra locus that was identified by breeders as a regulator of leaf shape. They show that the Okra locus…

J. Exp. Bot. Special Issue: Making Connections: Plant Vascular Tissue Development

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The Journal of Experimental Botany has a special issue on vascular development that features several outstanding review and opinion articles. Topics include Evolution of Conducting Cells, Regulation of Vascular Cell Division, overviews of hormones, peptide signals, receptors and transcription factors…

Gene editing to produce doubly-determinate, early-yielding tomatoes ($)

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Tomatoes have an indeterminate growth pattern that arises from the balance of flower-promoting (florigen) and flower repressing activities. Suppressing this flower-repressing activity leads to greater determinacy and facilitates cultivation. Soyk et al. compared flowering times in short- and long-days…

Genetic basis of primrose floral dimorphism

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Self-fertilization in Primula is avoided by the production of two flower forms (morphs), one with a long style in which the stigma is elevated above the anthers (the L morph or pin) and one with a short style in which the anthers are well above the stigma (the S morph or thrum), although there are also…

Review: Volvox as a developmental model

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Matt and Umen introduce the multicellular green alga Volvox carteri as a model for developmental studies. They provide an overview of embryonic patterning including the role of asymmetric cell divisions, inversion, (a process with some similarities to vertebrate gastrulation), and the role of cell size…

Review: Competence to flower

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The transition between vegetative and reproductive stages in the plant life cycle implies a change in the developmental program of the shoot apical meristem to stop developing leaves and start developing floral buds. The factors that allow this transition to happen are many and the underlying mechanisms…

Previewing Pollen Biology special issue of Plant Physiology

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In Plant Physiology Preview you can get a head start on reading the excellent set of articles from a forthcoming special issue on Pollen Biology. Updates and research articles cover all aspects of this crucial part of reproductive biology, from the complex cell biology that underpins polar growth of…