Recent Posts

Review: Connecting the pieces: uncovering the molecular basis for long-distance communication through plant grafting (New Phytol)

Grafting is an ancient vegetative asexual plant propagation technique. It is characterized by the connection of two plant segments, the shoot piece known as ‘scion’ and the root piece called ‘rootstock’ or simply 'stock'. Grafting is widely used in agriculture to improve crop production and…

Ca2+-dependent processing of immunomodulatory peptides ($) (Science)

Plants are sessile organisms that have evolved an extraordinary immune system to optimally adapt to the risky environment, which includes hazards such as insect chewing, weather damaging, and pathogen invasion. But the signaling mechanism of how the physical damage of cells triggers the intracellular…

Constitutive signaling activity of a receptor-associated protein links fertilization with embryonic patterning in Arabidopsis thaliana ($) (PNAS)

The apical and basal identity of a growing embryo is determined by an asymmetrical division of the zygote in flowering plants. The MAPKK kinase YODA (YDA) is important for zygotic elongation and embryonic polarity. During embryo development, YDA is activated by the membrane associated pseudo-kinase SHORT…

The phosphorylation and protein interaction landscape of the plant TOR kinase (Nature Plants) ($)

The TOR (target of rapamycin) is a conserved regulator of cellular homeostasis and energy status in several clades of life. TOR signaling is well studied in animals while precise regulation and downstream targets of TOR kinase are not very well explored in plants. Some well-studied TOR kinase targets…

Evolution of chloroplast retrograde signaling facilitates green plant adaptation to land (PNAS)

The evolution of signaling pathways in plants enabled the water to land transition, during which drought response was crucial for the adaptation to terrestrial habitats. Here, Zhao et al. reveal the role of drought- induced phosphoadenosine (PAP) in the regulation of abscisic acid (ABA) synthesis in…

Two opposing pathways independently regulate symbiotic nodulation in Medicago truncatula ($) (Plant Physiol)

To optimize usage of nutrient, legumes utilize multiple strategies to regulate root nitrogen-fixing symbiotic nodulation. Excessive nodulation may hamper plant’s normal growth, so fine-tuning it is important for plant survival. Laffont et al. report that there are two independent pathways systematically…

Lipids and Auxin Signaling in Plant Salt Responses

Wang et al. highlight the importance of lipid protein interactions in spatiotemporal regulation of auxin signalling. Plant Cell https://doi.org/10.1105/tpc.18.00528 By Peipei Wang and Qun Zhang Background:  Salt stress inhibits plant growth and development, leading to many physiological reactions.…

Identification of novel inhibitors of auxin-induced Ca2+ signaling via a plant-based chemical screen (Plant Physiol)

Plants can adjust their shape, size and number of organs, grow according to gravity and light, and regenerate damaged tissues, through the action of the plant hormone auxin. Another versatile signal comes from Ca2+, which is a crucial second messenger for many cellular processes during responses to a…

PILS6 is a temperature-sensitive regulator of nuclear auxin input and organ growth (PNAS)

Auxin, a plant hormone and major growth regulator, is fundamental for adaptations to climatic variation in shoots but its role in roots under elevated temperatures is more controversial. PIN-LIKES (PILS) 2, 3 and 5 proteins have previously been identified to restrict nuclear auxin signalling but the…