Current Plant Knowledge News and Events

Current Plant Knowledge News and Events, Plant Knowledge News Articles.
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Parasitic plants conspire to keep hosts alive
The plant that encourages kissing at Christmas is in fact a parasite, and new research reveals mistletoe has an unusual feeding strategy. When two mistletoes invade the same tree, they increase photosynthesis to get the nutrients they need, essentially sharing the tree and causing it less harm. (2021-02-23)

Plant responses to climate are lagged
Plant responses to climate drivers such as temperature and precipitation may become visible only years after the actual climate event. This is a key result of new research led by the German Centre of Integrative Biodiversity Research (iDiv), the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) and the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) published in Global Change Biology. The results indicate that climate drivers may have different effects on the survivorship, growth and reproduction of plant species than suggested by earlier studies. (2021-02-22)

Time-lapse reveals the hidden dance of roots
New time-lapse videos capture something that's too slow for our eyes to see: the growing tips of plant roots make corkscrew-like motions, waggling and winding in a helical path as they burrow into the soil. By using time-lapse footage, along with a root-like robot to test ideas, researchers have gained new insights into how and why rice root tips twirl as they grow. (2021-02-19)

Breeding better seeds: Healthy food for more people
For thousands of years, farmers have worked to perfect their crops. Today, scientists use the latest advances to improve the foundation of civilization -- our seeds. (2021-02-17)

Silencing the alarm
Like a scene from a horror movie, tomato fruitworm caterpillars silence their food plants' cries for help as they devour their leaves. That is the finding of a multidisciplinary team of researchers, who said the results may yield insights into the abilities of crop plants -- such as tomato and soybean -- to withstand additional stressors, like climate change. (2021-02-17)

Skoltech's recent achievement takes us one step closer to Mars
Scientists have developed an artificial intelligence (AI) system that enables processing images from autonomous greenhouses, monitoring plant growth, and automating the cultivation process. In their article, they share the experience in the scope of controlled-environment agriculture automation in the Antarctic station greenhouse facility called EDEN ISS. (2021-02-17)

Scientists of Kemerovo State University have developed a technology for creating in vitro root
Scientists of Kemerovo State University have developed a technology for creating in vitro root cultures with a high content of biologically active substances. (2021-02-16)

Plant as superhero during nuclear power plant accidents
A collaborative study by a group of scientists from Iwate University, The University of Tokyo and Shimane University, Japan demonstrated for the first time that two ATP binding cassette proteins ABCG33 and ABCG37 function as potassium-independent cesium uptake carriers. (2021-02-16)

Perceiving predators: Understanding how plants 'sense' herbivore attack
Plants are known to possess solid immune response mechanisms. One such response is ''sensing'' attack by herbivorous animals. In a new review article, Prof. Arimura from Tokyo University of Science, Japan, discusses ''elicitors''--the molecules that initiate plant defense mechanisms against herbivore attack. He highlights the major types of elicitors and the underlying cellular signaling, and states that this could spur research on organic farming practices that could prevent the use of harmful pesticides. (2021-02-16)

A boost for plant research
Optogenetics can be used to activate and study cells in a targeted manner using light. Scientists at the University of Würzburg have now succeeded in transferring this technique to plants. (2021-02-16)

Researchers solve riddle of plant immune system
How do plants build resilience? An international research team led by the University of Göttingen studied the molecular mechanisms of the plant immune system. They were able to show a connection between a relatively unknown gene and resistance to pathogens. The results of the study were published in the journal The Plant Cell. (2021-02-16)

Membrane building blocks play decisive role in controlling cell growth
Lipids are the building blocks of a cell's envelope - the cell membrane. In addition to their structural function, some lipids also play a regulatory role and decisively influence cell growth. This has been investigated in a new study by scientists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU). The impact of the lipids depends on how they are distributed over the plasma membrane. The study was published in 'The Plant Cell'. (2021-02-15)

Evolution of cereal spikes
A research team led by Prof. Dr. Maria von Korff Schmising from Heinrich Heine University Duesseldorf (HHU) and the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research (MPIPZ) in Cologne investigated the genetic regulation of spike development in barley and wheat. As reported in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS), they discovered different barley mutants with wheat-like spikes. (2021-02-15)

Integrating maths and plant science to explain how plant roots generate a hormone gradient
The research team that developed a biosensor that first recorded that a distinct gradient of the plant growth hormone gibberellin correlated with plant cell size has now revealed how this distribution pattern is created in roots. (2021-02-15)

Flowers of St. John's Wort serve as green catalyst
An interdisciplinary team of scientists from the School of Science at TU Dresden has for the first time used dried flowers of St. John's Wort (genus Hypericum) as an active catalyst in various photochemical reactions. This conceptually new and sustainable process was registered as a German patent and presented in the journal 'Green Chemistry'. (2021-02-12)

Biosensors monitor plant well-being in real time
Researchers at Linköping University, Sweden, have developed biosensors that make it possible to monitor sugar levels in real time deep in the plant tissues - something that has previously been impossible. The information from the sensors may help agriculture to adapt production as the world faces climate change. The results have been published in the scientific journal iScience. (2021-02-11)

New insights to past ecosystems are now available based on pollen and plant traits
Researchers have mined and combined information from two databases to link pollen and key plant traits to generate confidence in the ability to reconstruct past ecosystem services. The approach can help understand how plants performed different benefits useful for humans over the past 21,000 years, and how these services responded to human and climate disturbances. (2021-02-11)

A plant's nutrient-sensing abilities can modulate its response to environmental stress
Understanding how plants respond to stressful environmental conditions is crucial to developing effective strategies for protecting important agricultural crops from a changing climate. New research led by Carnegie's Zhiyong Wang, Shouling, Xu, and Yang Bi reveals an important process by which plants switch between amplified and dampened stress responses. (2021-02-11)

Finding the best targets to improve crop yield by following CO2 journey inside the leaf
A team of scientists have measured the relative importance of the different obstacles that carbon dioxide (CO2) encounters in its voyage from the atmosphere to the interior of plant cells, where it is converted into sugars. This research leading method provides much needed information that will help to increase the yield of important food crops such as cowpea, soybean and cassava. (2021-02-11)

Cataloguing genetic information about yams
New collection of resources will help yam breeders and farmers. (2021-02-10)

Plant-based diet and bone health: adequate calcium and vitamin D intakes should be ensured
In a study conducted at the University of Helsinki, partial replacement of animal protein with plant protein in the diet altered bone metabolism and decreased calcium and vitamin D intakes. (2021-02-10)

Samara Polytech scientists proved the anti-cancer properties of a number of plant extracts
The composition of some extracts obtained from plant raw materials was studied at Samara Polytech, and their anticarcinogenic and antioxidant properties were assessed. (2021-02-09)

Ecological interactions as a driver of evolution
In a recent study, an international team of researchers including TUD botanist Prof. Stefan Wanke has investigated the origin of the mega-diversity of herbivorous insects. These account for a quarter of terrestrial diversity. The results of the study were recently published in the international journal Nature Communications. There the scientists show that the evolutionary success of insects may be linked to recurrent changes in host plants. (2021-02-09)

Richness of plant species reduces the number of viral infections in meadows
A new study indicates that agricultural activity confuses the mechanisms that regulate the occurrence of plant diseases in nature. A wider variety of virus species was found in meadows close to agricultural fields compared to those located in natural surroundings, with the richness of plant species having no effect on the number of virus species. However, maintaining biodiversity is worthwhile, as plant richness did reduce the number of viral infections in the meadows. (2021-02-08)

In symbiosis: Plants control the genetics of microbes
Researchers from the University of Ottawa have discovered that plants may be able to control the genetics of their intimate root symbionts - the organism with which they live in symbiosis - thereby providing a better understanding of their growth. In addition to having a significant impact on all terrestrial ecosystems, their discovery may lead to improved eco-friendly agricultural applications. (2021-02-04)

Some food contamination starts in the soil
Rice husk residue can prevent uptake of harmful elements in rice. (2021-02-03)

Scientists believe studies by colleagues are more prone to biases than their own studies
The properties of human mind affect the quality of scientific knowledge through the insertion of unconscious cognitive biases. Scientists from the University of Turku, Finland, have found that the current level of awareness about research biases is generally low among ecology scientists. Underestimation of the risks associated with unconscious cognitive biases prevents avoiding these risks in a scientist's own research. Due to unconscious origin of biases, it is impossible to combat them without external intervention. (2021-02-03)

Fungus that eats fungus could help coffee farmers
Coffee rust is a parasitic fungus and a big problem for coffee growers around the world. A study in the birthplace of coffee - Ethiopia - shows that another fungus seems to have the capacity to supress the rust outbreaks in this landscape. (2021-02-03)

Curtin study finds native bees under threat from growing urbanization
Residential gardens are a poor substitute for native bushland and increasing urbanisation is a growing threat when it comes to bees, Curtin University research has found. Published in 'Urban Ecosystems', the research looked at bee visits to flowers, which form pollination networks across different native bushland and home garden habitats. (2021-02-02)

How plants stabilize their water pipes
New techniques allow live-observation of forming cell walls in the vascular tissue (2021-02-02)

Study challenges ecology's 'Field of Dreams' hypothesis
A new study challenges the ''Field of Dreams'' hypothesis in restoration ecology, which predicts that restoring plant biodiversity will lead to recovery of animal biodiversity. The study of restored tallgrass prairie found the effects of management strategies (specifically controlled burns and bison reintroduction) on animal communities were six times stronger on average than the effects of plant biodiversity. (2021-02-02)

Research catches up to world's fastest-growing plant
Wolffia, also known as duckweed, is the fastest-growing plant known, but the genetics underlying this strange little plant's success have long been a mystery to scientists. A multi-investigator effort led by scientists from the Salk Institute is reporting new findings about the plant's genome that explain how it's able to grow so fast. (2021-02-01)

Alpine plants at risk of extinction following disappearing glaciers
Nearly a quarter of Italian alpine plant species are threatened by glacier retreat, according to a new study from Stanford University. Glaciers around the world are predicted to disappear within the next decade and the consequences for the plants, animals and societies surrounding them are still uncertain. By combining historical records, current surveys and computational models, the researchers' findings may help guide conservation efforts. (2021-01-29)

Wood formation can now be followed in real-time -- and possibly serve the climate of tomorrow
A genetic engineering method makes it possible to observe how woody cell walls are built in plants. The new research in wood formation, conducted by the University of Copenhagen and others, opens up the possibility of developing sturdier construction materials and perhaps more climate efficient trees. (2021-01-28)

How climate caprices can trigger plants
Climate change may challenge organismal responses through not only extreme cues. An uncommon combination of benign cues - warm and short days - can also trigger reactions such as misregulations of leaves. (2021-01-27)

Building a corn cob--cell by cell, gene by gene
CSHL scientists analyzed where and when thousands of genes are activated in baby corn. This allowed them to build an anatomical map of important developmental genes that can be manipulated to improve crop yield and resilience. (2021-01-26)

Over half of cannabis users with Parkinson's disease report clinical benefits
With medicinal cannabis now legalized in many parts of the world, there is growing interest in its use to alleviate symptoms of many illnesses including Parkinson's disease (PD). According to results of a survey of PD patients in Germany in the Journal of Parkinson's Disease, over 8% of patients with PD reported using cannabis products and more than half of those users (54%) reported a beneficial clinical effect. (2021-01-26)

Anti-freeze for cell membranes
Mosses and flowering plants took different genetic routes to evolve a similar defense mechanism. (2021-01-25)

New variety of paintbrush lily developed by a novel plant tissue culture technique
Scientists at Hokkaido University and Chiba University have developed simultaneous triploid and hexaploid varieties of Haemanthus albiflos by the application of endosperm culture, thus extending the use of this technique. (2021-01-22)

Fungi strengthen plants to fend off aphids
Researchers at the University of Copenhagen have demonstrated that unique fungi strengthen the ''immune systems'' of wheat and bean plants against aphids. Fungi enter and influence the amount of a plant's own defences, resulting in fewer aphids. The results could serve to reduce agricultural insecticide use and bring Denmark a step further along the path towards its green transition. (2021-01-22)

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