Recent Posts

Essay: Reconstructing trait evolution in plant evo–devo studies (Curr. Biol.)

Plant evo-devo studies are thriving thanks to new genetic engineering tools and the emergence of model systems such as the moss Physcomitrella patens, the liverwort Marchantia polymorpha, and the fern Ceratopteris richardii. In the past few years many debates have taken place among the community, in…

Review: An evolutionary history of genes controlling carpel development (COPB)

Carpels, the female reproductive structures in angiosperms, are the most complex organs in plants. Most of the current knowledge about the molecular mechanism underlying carpel development derives from Arabidopsis. In a new review, Becker summarizes recent studies about the reconstruction of ancestral…

New insights into Marchantia polymorpha genome

Since the publication of the Marchantia polymorpha genome in 2017, a big update was necessary. In the past week, two groups published on improving Marchantia chromosome assembly following different experimental approaches. Diop et al. made a high-density linkage map using genetic markers obtained by…

A conserved signaling module controls tip growth in liverwort and Arabidopsis (Curr. Biol).

Plants have evolved with rooting cells to anchor them to the land and uptake nutrients efficiently. Growth of root hairs in seed plants or rhizoids in early diverging plants both rely on tip growth, which requires a coordination of wall loosening and deposition of wall materials with cell expansion in…

Mesostigma viride genome and transcriptome provide insights into the origin and evolution of Streptophyta (Adv. Sci)

Multicellularity has arisen independently many times across the eukaryotic tree of life (e.g., in plants, animals and fungi). Comparisons of green algae with land plants is likely to identify the genetic toolkit of multicellularity as well as the colonization of terrestrial habitats. Here, Liang et al.…

On the origin of oxygenic photosynthesis and cyanobacteria (New Phytol)

Photosynthesis occurs in several ways, only one of which releases oxygen as a product. As oxygen-breathing organisms, we are totally dependent on oxygenic photosynthesis, which is restricted to cyanobacteria and green plant plastids. In this review, Sánchez‐Baracaldo and Cardona examine how recent…

Replaying the evolutionary tape to investigate subgenome dominance in allopolyploid Brassica napus (bioRxiv)

Following interspecific hybridization, one of the two parental genomes (aka subgenomes) tends to become dominant (more highly retained and expressed). What determines which of the subgenomes will become dominant, or is it random? To explore this question, Bird et al. made several crosses between Brassica…

One thousand plant transcriptomes and the phylogenomics of green plants (Nature)

With a collaborative effort by multiple laboratories across the world, a database of transcriptomics data has been generated for 1124 species encompassing green plants, glaucophytes, and red algae. This extensive work referred to as onekp (one thousand plant transcriptomes) will aid in researchers to…

Minimal auxin sensing levels in vegetative moss stem cells revealed by a ratiometric reporter ($) (New Phytologist)

Auxin plays multiple developmental roles from embryogenesis to seed development. To understand the mechanism of auxin response in plants, researchers utilize the early-diverging land plant models, Physcomitrella patens and Marchantia polymorpha. In this paper, Thelander et al., have identified a…