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…

Crystal structure of plant vacuolar transporter VIT1 (Nature Plants) ($)

Iron is an essential nutrient for plants that participates in cellular processes such as DNA replication, photosynthesis, and respiration. Excess iron accumulation is harmful to plants due to its participation in the generation of reactive oxygen species, which can damage cellular machinery. One of the…

Oscillating aquaporin phosphorylations and 14-3-3 proteins mediate circadian regulation of leaf hydraulics (Plant Cell)

Plant activities change drastically between the light and dark times of day. Many of these different activities can be observed through transcriptional studies, which show that gene expression goes up and down over the course of the day. Many of these transcriptional changes are driven by the circadian…

Hydraulic Regulation of Stomata in Ferns

Stomatal responses to environmental and endogenous signals in vascular plants are critical for regulating plant gas exchange with the atmosphere. In addition, stomatal closure is vital for minimizing water loss and preventing lethal embolism during drought.  The vast majority of studies concerning stomatal…

Review: Long distance signlaing in plant stress response (COPB)

To compensate for their lack of a nervous system, vascular plants have developed complex mechanisms to connect their organs and coordinate stress. Many different types of molecules are involved in long-distance signaling and must be integrated to maintain homeostasis. In this review, Takahashi and Shinozaki…

Expert View. Merging genotypes: Scion/rootstock interactions (J Exp Bot)

Grafting is an ancient technology and still extremely important in horticulture and food production, including grapes for wine. Although much is known about what scion/shoot combinations work, less is known at the molecular and cellular level about successful grafts. How do two genetically different…

Review: Perspective on wheat yield and quality with reduced N supply (TIPS)

Wheat production demands huge inputs of nitrogen as fertilizer, with accompanying financial and environmental costs. Zorb et al. discuss several strategies by which to maintain wheat yields and wheat quality while decreasing N use and wastage. Some of these are agronomic, such as ensuring that the N…

Brassica clubroot disease protist pathogen promotes phloem differentiation and expression of SWEET sucrose transporters (Plant Cell)

Clubroot is a disease of brassicas (including oilseed crops and Arabidopsis) caused by the protist Plasmodiophora brassicae. The infection is characterized by the formation of swollen tissues called galls that are metabolic sinks in which the pathogen propagates. Walerowski et al. took advantage of Arabidopsis…

How Peroxisomes Modulate Chloroplast Activity in a Microalga

Background: Chloroplasts are the major powerhouse of plant and algal cells, where photosynthesis—the conversion of carbon dioxide into organic compounds using sunlight energy—occurs. Chloroplasts are also where important cell components (such as membrane lipids and pigments) and energy-rich compounds…