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Plant Biology Highlights: Nature Articles 2018

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We are almost at the end of another year. Undoubtedly, we came across amazing research and review articles in this year. As plant biologists, we are more focused on plant-specific journals. Along with those plant-specific journals, plant-related stories are making their place into other journals too. Like previous years, this year also, I'm covering plant biology stories published in Cell, Science, and Nature all the year round. In this post, you'll find published papers from Nature.  





MicroRNAs from the parasitic plant Cuscuta campestris target host messenger RNAs


Dodders (Cuscuta spp.) are obligate parasitic plants that obtain water and nutrients from the stems of host plants via specialized feeding structures called haustoria. Dodder haustoria facilitate bidirectional movement of viruses, proteins and mRNAs between host and parasite, but the functional effects of these movements are not known. Here, they showed that Cuscuta campestris haustoria accumulate high levels of many …

Plant Biology Highlights: Cell Articles 2018

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We are almost at the end of another year. Undoubtedly, we came across amazing research and review articles in this year. As plant biologists, we are more focused on plant-specific journals. Along with those plant-specific journals, plant-related stories are making their place into other journals too. Like previous years, this year also, I'm covering plant biology stories published in Cell, Science, and Nature all the year round. In this post, you'll find published papers from Cell.



Flavin Monooxygenase-generated N-Hydroxypipecolic Acid is a Critical Element of Plant Systemic Immunity

Following a previous microbial inoculation, plants can induce broad-spectrum immunity to pathogen infection, a phenomenon known as systemic acquired resistance (SAR). SAR establishment in Arabidopsis thaliana is regulated by the Lys catabolite pipecolic acid (Pip) and flavin-dependent-monooxygenase1 (FMO1). Here, we show that elevated Pip is sufficient to induce an FMO1-dependent transcriptional rep…

Plant Biology Highlights: Science Articles 2018

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We are almost at the end of another year. Undoubtedly, we came across amazing research and review articles in this year. As plant biologists, we are more focused on plant-specific journals. Along with those plant-specific journals, plant-related stories are making their place into other journals too. Like previous years, this year also, I'm covering plant biology stories published in Cell, Science, and Nature all the year round. In this post, you'll find published papers from Science.  




Photoperiodic control of seasonal growth is mediated by ABA acting on cell-cell communication


In temperate and boreal ecosystems, seasonal cycles of growth and dormancy allow perennial plants to adapt to winter conditions. They showed, in hybrid aspen trees, that photoperiodic regulation of dormancy is mechanistically distinct from autumnal growth cessation. Dormancy sets in when symplastic intercellular communication through plasmodesmata is blocked by a process dependent on the phytohormone abs…

Why Arabidopsis Why: Plant Hormone Combatting Cancer

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A philosophical journey

Not only plant biologists but also people from other field know about Daniel Chamovits. In my opinion, he made a tremendous effort to present plant science cool and easy for everyone through his book What A Plant Knows and two-part lecture series (Understanding Plants - Part I and Part II) on Coursera. 
He often tried to find the phenomena exclusive for plants and eventually realize plants and other system converge nicely. This statement reflects through his lab's work as they use both plant (Arabidopsis) and animal (Drosophila) model systems in their experiments. To me, it seems super cool! One of the current projects of his lab is to find phytochemical which has the role in combatting cancer and decipher their mode of actions.  

An ancient medicine with unknown function

From the study of ancient times, it was known that cruciferous vegetables (cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage and so on) containing diet is healthy. In recent time, epidemiological studies suggest…

Temperature-specific Alternative Splicing

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Bird's-Eye View of Alternative Splicing
A single gene may produce multiple end products or proteins. The process, responsible for creating multiple proteins, is known as Alternative Splicing. If you imagine the structure of a gene as the organization of two types of boxes (exon and intron) arranges alternatively, the single gene product depicts the scenario of taking out "intron boxes" and put "exon boxes" in order. What if when one "exon box" is missed or one "intron box" remained? That doesn't sound like expected output. It suggests the ability of the system to splice out boxes in an alternative manner. 
Alternative Splicing in Arabidopsis
Alternative splicing event usually occurs in 4 ways: exon skipping/inclusion, alternative 3' splice region, alternative 5' splice region and intron retention. Alternative splicing is a common event in every living system. It provides an amazing opportunity to uncover which type of alternative s…

Mutant Series: THESEUS (THE)

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Plants have one unique component as a boundary, known as "cell wall". Alteration of the cell wall or its components demonstrates visible phenotype at the whole plant level. One of the major components of the cell wall is cellulose.  
Cellulose-deficient mutant, such as procuste 1-1 (prc1-1), has short hypocotyl containing phenotype. prc1-1 has the defect in cellulose synthase catalytic subunit CESA6. But, it was not known how the short hypocotyl containing phenotype was developmentally coordinated. To understand that when chemical mutagenesis was introduced in the prc1-1 mutant background, 5 intermediate length hypocotyls (hypocotyl was between the wild-type and prc1-1) containing plants were picked up. Among these 5, the same gene was mutated into 2 cases. They named that gene THESEUS (THE). Theseus was the Greek mythical founder-hero of Athens and he slaughtered the rogue smith and bandit Procrustes. Here, in Arabidopsis, the short hypocotyl of pcr1-1 is also rescued by the…