Recent Posts

Changing Fates: Brassinosteroids Underlying Yield Potential in Millet

Yang et al. reveal a role for brassinosteroids in spikelet and floral meristem fate in Setaria viridis.  The Plant Cell (2017) https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.17.00816 By Jiani Yang and Andrea L. Eveland Background: Grass inflorescences show extensive morphological diversity between species, due…

The Phytohormone Ethylene and Transcriptional Repression

Zhang et al. investigate histone deacetylase in the ethylene response. Plant Cell (2017). https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.17.00671 By Fan Zhang Background: Ethylene is the only gaseous hormone in plants, and is a key hormone controlling plant growth and resistance to stress. Epigenetic mechanisms are…

Auxin synthesis contributes to virulence of Pseudomonas syringae (PLOS Pathogens)

Plant pathogens have developed a large range of strategies to allow them to have successful interactions with their plant host, including physiological manipulation. For example, Pseudomonas syringae, the cause of speck disease in many plant systems, manipulates the auxin phytohormone physiology in its…

Cytokinin regulation in the endoplasmic reticulum (Plant Physiology)

Cytokinin is a phytohormone involved in many plant processes such as cell proliferation, apical dominance, leaf senescence, tissue patterning, organ initiation, environmental responses…  To allow for effective control of all these processes, cytokinin concentrations need to be continuously adjusted.…

Chemical hijacking of auxin signaling with an engineered auxin–TIR1 pair ($) (Nature Chemical Biology)

Gene redundancy and/or developmental defects of higher order mutants make it hard to study the role of individual components of auxin signaling. Structural biology approach can provide a detour that circumvents endogenous auxin signaling. Removing of the phenyl moiety of F79 in the auxin receptor…

Review: Strigolactones and symbiosis across the kingdoms (plants, fungi, and bacteria) (J. Experimental Botany)

Strigolactones (SLs) are plant hormones with pivotal roles in plant growth. Being conserved among all plant species, they’ve been recruited by plant-associated microbes as plant-derived molecules allowing microbes to detect plants, exchange signals and establish interactions with them. In this review,…

Nutrient modulation of Arabidopsis shoot apical meristem dynamics (PNAS)

Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA. The shoot apical meristem (SAM) is essential for the adaptation of aerial plant tissue architecture to changes in the environment. This paper by Landrein and colleagues connects changes in the plant environment (soil type, soil fertility, nitrate concentration) to changes…

Brassinosteroids modulate meristem fate and differentiation of unique inflorescence morphology in Setaria viridis

Plant Cell. The yield potential of crops is strongly influenced by floral architecture, a trait determined by the fate of stem cells in meristematic tissue.  Meristems themselves are influenced by several factors, including phytohormones such as brassinosteroids (BRs) and gibberellic acid (GA).  BRs…

Arabidopsis thaliana plants lacking the ARP2/3 complex show defects in cell wall assembly and auxin distribution

The plant cytoskeleton determines cell shape and integrity by delivering cellulose microfibrils and other cell wall components to the plasma membrane and cell wall. Auxin is involved in establishing the polarity of cell expansion and auxin distribution is partly regulated by actin. Sahi et al. examine…