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Trends in Plant Science

Lidan Sun, Jing Wang, Mengmeng Sang, Libo Jiang, Bingyu Zhao, Tangran Cheng, Qixiang Zhang, Rongling Wu
The evolutionary success of eukaryotic organisms crucially depends on the capacity to produce genetic diversity through reciprocal exchanges of each chromosome pair, or crossovers (COs), during meiosis. It has been recognized that COs arise more evenly across a given chromosome than at random. This phenomenon, termed CO interference, occurs pervasively in eukaryotes and may confer a selective advantage. We describe here a multipoint linkage analysis procedure for segregating families to quantify the strength of CO interference over the genome, and extend this procedure to illustrate the landscape of CO interference in natural populations...
August 16, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Graham Noctor, Amna Mhamdi
Ongoing human-induced changes in the composition of the atmosphere continue to stimulate interest in the effects of high CO2 on plants, but its potential impact on inducible plant defense pathways remains poorly defined. Recently, several studies have reported that growth at elevated CO2 is sufficient to induce defenses such as the salicylic acid pathway, thereby increasing plant resistance to pathogens. These reports contrast with evidence that defense pathways can be promoted by photorespiration, which is inhibited at high CO2...
August 12, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Kemo Jin, Philip J White, William R Whalley, Jianbo Shen, Lei Shi
Crop production depends on the availability of water and mineral nutrients, and increased yields might be facilitated by a greater focus on roots-soil interactions. Soil properties affecting plant growth include drought, compaction, nutrient deficiency, mineral toxicity, salinity, and submergence. Plant roots respond to the soil environment both spatially and temporally by avoiding stressful soil environments and proliferating in more favorable environments. We observe that crops can be bred for specific root architectural and biochemical traits that facilitate soil exploration and resource acquisition, enabling greater crop yields...
August 10, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
J K Holopainen, M Kivimäenpää, S A Nizkorodov
Biogenic secondary organic aerosol (SOA) and deposited secondary organic material (SOM) are formed by oxidation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) emitted by plants. Many SOA compounds have much longer chemical lifetimes than the original VOC, and may accumulate on plant surfaces and in soil as SOM because of their low volatility. This suggests that they may have important and presently unrecognized roles in plant adaptation. Using reactive plant terpenoids as a model we propose a three-tier (atmosphere-vegetation-soil) framework to better understand the ecological and evolutionary functions of SOM...
August 5, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Muhammad Naseem, Meik Kunz, Thomas Dandekar
The nutrient-rich extracellular plant compartment, the apoplast, is an attractive niche for attacks by microbial pathogens. Here, we highlight recent trends in plant-pathogen competition for apoplastic sugars in the context of innate immune responses in various plant-pathogen interaction systems.
August 2, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Andrea A Gust, Rory Pruitt, Thorsten Nürnberger
In both plants and animals, defense against pathogens relies on a complex surveillance system for signs of danger. Danger signals may originate from the infectious agent or from the host itself. Immunogenic plant host factors can be roughly divided into two categories: molecules which are passively released upon cell damage ('classical' damage-associated molecular patterns, DAMPs), and peptides which are processed and/or secreted upon infection to modulate the immune response (phytocytokines). We highlight the ongoing challenge to understand how plants sense various danger signals and integrate this information to produce an appropriate immune response to diverse challenges...
August 2, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Ana Pineda, Ian Kaplan, T Martijn Bezemer
Soil-borne microbes affect aboveground herbivorous insects through a cascade of molecular and chemical changes in the plant, but knowledge of these microbe-plant-insect interactions is mostly limited to one or a few microbial strains. Yet, the soil microbial community comprises thousands of unique taxa interacting in complex networks, the so-called 'microbiome', which provides plants with multiple beneficial functions. There has been little exploration of the role and management of whole microbiomes in plant-insect interactions, calling for the integration of this complexity in aboveground-belowground research...
July 27, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Susan Breen, Simon J Williams, Megan Outram, Bostjan Kobe, Peter S Solomon
The members of the pathogenesis-related protein 1 (PR-1) family are among the most abundantly produced proteins in plants on pathogen attack, and PR-1 gene expression has long been used as a marker for salicylic acid-mediated disease resistance. However, despite considerable interest over several decades, their requirement and role in plant defence remains poorly understood. Recent reports have emerged demonstrating that PR-1 proteins possess sterol-binding activity, harbour an embedded defence signalling peptide, and are targeted by plant pathogens during host infection...
July 22, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Pascal Gamas, Mathias Brault, Marie-Françoise Jardinaud, Florian Frugier
Substantial progress has been made in the understanding of early stages of the symbiotic interaction between legume plants and rhizobium bacteria. Those include the specific recognition of symbiotic partners, the initiation of bacterial infection in root hair cells, and the inception of a specific organ in the root cortex, the nodule. Increasingly complex regulatory networks have been uncovered in which cytokinin (CK) phytohormones play essential roles in different aspects of early symbiotic stages. Intriguingly, these roles can be either positive or negative, cell autonomous or non-cell autonomous, and vary, depending on time, root tissues, and possibly legume species...
July 21, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Sangam L Dwivedi, Edith T Lammerts van Bueren, Salvatore Ceccarelli, Stefania Grando, Hari D Upadhyaya, Rodomiro Ortiz
Increasing demand for nutritious, safe, and healthy food because of a growing population, and the pledge to maintain biodiversity and other resources, pose a major challenge to agriculture that is already threatened by a changing climate. Diverse and healthy diets, largely based on plant-derived food, may reduce diet-related illnesses. Investments in plant sciences will be necessary to design diverse cropping systems balancing productivity, sustainability, and nutritional quality. Cultivar diversity and nutritional quality are crucial...
July 14, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Hyo-Jun Lee, Young-Joon Park, Jun-Ho Ha, Ian T Baldwin, Chung-Mo Park
Plants dynamically adjust their architecture to optimize growth and performance under fluctuating light environments, a process termed photomorphogenesis. A variety of photomorphogenic responses have been studied extensively in the shoots, where diverse photoreceptors and signaling molecules have been functionally characterized. Notably, accumulating evidence demonstrates that the underground roots also undergo photomorphogenesis, raising the question of how roots perceive and respond to aboveground light. Recent findings indicate that root photomorphogenesis is mediated by multiple signaling routes, including shoot-to-root transmission of mobile signaling molecules, direct sensing of light by the roots, and light channeling through the plant body...
July 10, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Johan A Stenberg
The concept of integrated pest management (IPM) has been accepted and incorporated in public policies and regulations in the European Union and elsewhere, but a holistic science of IPM has not yet been developed. Hence, current IPM programs may often be considerably less efficient than the sum of separately applied individual crop protection actions. Thus, there is a clear need to formulate general principles for synergistically combining traditional and novel IPM actions to improve efforts to optimize plant protection solutions...
July 4, 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Grégoire Denay, Gilles Vachon, Renaud Dumas, Chloe Zubieta, François Parcy
Proteins often act in complexes assembled via protein-protein interaction domains. The sterile alpha motif (SAM) domain is one of the most prominent interaction domains in animals and is present in proteins of diverse functions. This domain allows head-to-tail closed oligomerisation or polymer formation resulting in homo- and/or heterocomplexes that have been shown to be important for proper protein localisation and function. In plants this domain is also present but has been poorly studied except for recent studies on the LEAFY floral regulator and the tRNA import component (TRIC)1/2 proteins...
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Sophia L Samodelov, Matias D Zurbriggen
With the need to respond to and integrate a multitude of external and internal stimuli, plant signaling is highly complex, exhibiting signaling component redundancy and high interconnectedness between individual pathways. We review here novel theoretical-experimental approaches in manipulating plant signaling towards the goal of a comprehensive understanding and targeted quantitative control of plant processes. We highlight approaches taken in the field of synthetic biology used in other systems and discuss their applicability in plants...
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Julie A Hawkins, Irene Teixidor-Toneu
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Ghader Mirzaghaderi, Annaliese S Mason
An interesting and possibly unique pattern of genome evolution following polyploidy can be observed among allopolyploids of the Triticum and Aegilops genera (wheat group). Most polyploids in this group are presumed to share a common unaltered (pivotal) subgenome (U, D, or A) together with one or two modified (differential) subgenomes, a status that has been referred to as 'pivotal-differential' genome evolution. In this review we discuss various mechanisms that could be responsible for this evolutionary pattern, as well as evidence for and against the putative evolutionary mechanisms involved...
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Teresa Garnatje, Josep Peñuelas, Joan Vallès
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Lei Wang, Qifa Zhang
Plant architecture is an important determinant of crop yield. Recent studies showed that SPL family genes regulate the architecture of rice plants. SPLs inhibit tillering in general, but promote panicle branching at optimal expression levels to increase grain number. Fine-tuning the expression of SPL genes may provide useful strategies for crop improvement.
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Marion Clavel, Simon Michaeli, Pascal Genschik
In metazoans, autophagy is an essential component of host defense against viruses, orchestrating their degradation. Such antiviral functions for autophagy have also been long suspected in the green lineage. Two recent reports provide molecular insights on how plants selectively send viral proteins and even particles to the vacuole.
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
Gianluigi Ottaviani, Jana Martínková, Tomáš Herben, Juli G Pausas, Jitka Klimešová
On-spot persistence, space occupancy, and recovery after damage are key plant functions largely understudied. Traits relevant to these functions are difficult to assess because of their relationships to plant modularity. We suggest that developing collection protocols for these traits is feasible and could facilitate their inclusion in global syntheses.
August 2017: Trends in Plant Science
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