Recent Posts

Nanoscale movements of cellulose microfibrils in primary cell walls ($)

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Cell walls are complex mixtures of cellulose microfibrils, proteins and other materials. Their mechanical properties can be measured and modeled, but it is not always simple to translate these measurements to changes at the molecular level. Zhang et al. used atomic force microscopy to provide an unprecedented…

How do Chromosomes Evolve via Unstable Intermediates?

Yalin Liu, Handong Su, Jing Zhang, et al. explore centromere birth and death by inducing rearrangements via pollen irradiation in maize. Plant Cell https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.20.00389 Background: The centromere is one of the most important components of chromosomes. Every normal chromosome has one…

Rhythms in the dark: how endosperm responds to daylight cycles

Li et al. discover a diurnal pattern in sucrose content in developing maize endosperm that relies on the action of an E3 ubiquitin ligase on the master regulator transcription factor Opaque2. Plant Cell https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.20.00352 By Chaobin Li, Zeyang Ma, Rentao Song, China Agricultural…

The Multifaceted Roles of Autophagy in Fixed-carbon Starvation

McLoughlin et al. uncover the critical roles of autophagy in recycling amino acids and nitrogen-rich nucleotides, adjusting respiratory substrates, and the retention of assimilated nitrogen in maize during fixed-carbon starvation. The Plant Cell (2020) https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.20.00226  Background:…

Predicting Gene Regulatory Networks

Zhou et al. develop and test potential gene regulatory networks in maize. Plant Cell https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.20.00080 By Peng Zhou and Nathan Springer Background: Transcription factors (TFs) play critical roles in regulating the expression of genes. A single TF can control the expression of…

Family dynamics within the seed: Identification of new cell types in maize endosperm

Doll et al. examine the structure of maize seeds and identify a distinct cell type in the endosperm next to the embryo.  https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.19.00756 Nicolas M. Doll, Peter M. Rogowsky and Thomas Widiez Laboratoire Reproduction et Développement des Plantes, Univ Lyon, ENS de Lyon, UCB…

Roots Calling Leaves: Oxylipins in Induced Systemic Resistance

Wang et al. identify signals related to induced systemic resistance produced by a root-colonizing fungus. Plant Cell https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.19.00487 Background: Trichoderma virens is an agriculturally-relevant root-colonizing fungus that provides its plant hosts many benefits, such as increased…

High-temporal-resolution Transcriptome Landscape of Early Maize Seed Development

https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.18.00961  Yi et al. describe a high-temporal-resolution transcriptome landscape of early maize seed development.  By Fei Yi, Wei Gu, and Jinsheng Lai, State Key Laboratory of Agrobiotechnology and National Maize Improvement Center, Department of Plant Genetics and…

Metabolite to Gene: A High-Resolution Resource for Maize

Zhou et al. provide a resource for structural and functional assignment of the many unknown maize metabolites. Plant Cell https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.18.00772 Background: Plants defend themselves against herbivores and pathogens by producing a myriad of specialized metabolites. This physiological…

The xerobranching response represses lateral root formation when roots are not in contact with water (Curr. Biol. - $)

Roots navigate through the soil, foraging for water and nutrients. Orman-Ligeza et al. observed that lateral root development is repressed when the roots are growing through the soil air spaces. Exposure to water deficit induced transcriptome reprogramming in barley roots of genes involved in many hormone…