As a plant grows, it moves cellular material from its version of manufacturing sites to the cell wall construction zone. Transporter proteins, called motor proteins, are thought to move these cell wall cargo via a complex highway system made up of microtubule tracks. The position of these tracks must be stabilized so that cargo are delivered to the correct locations.
Soya and clover have their very own fertiliser factories in their roots, where bacteria manufacture ammonium, which is crucial for plant growth. Although this has long been common knowledge, scientists have only recently described the mechanism in detail. With biotechnology, this knowledge could now help make agriculture more sustainable.
How do plants know when it is time to flower? Researchers have studied this question and identified two genes that are key to this process. They were able to show that the ELF3 and GI genes control the internal clock of the plants that monitors the length of daylight and determine when it is the right time to flower.
High-throughput analyses of small substances in Nicotiana attenuata reveal that plants re-organize their metabolism to produce highly-specific defense metabolites after insect attack
Plant leaves exhibit a great diversity of forms that can be grouped into two types: simple leaves with a single blade and compound leaves with multiple units termed leaflets. A major question for plant developmental biologists is the molecular mechanism underlying diversity of compound leaf form during evolution.
For long, it was assumed that cell death occurs mainly during animal organ growth but not in plant organs. A research group demonstrated now that the death of certain cells in the root facilitated the growth of lateral roots. These new findings hint at organ growth of plants and animals might not be so different as thought.
New research identifies a protein that controls plant growth — good news for an era in which crops can get crushed by climate change.