March 2017

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  • Schematic view of the proposed events associated with the replication and movement of TMV.

    Modulation of host plant immunity by Tobamovirus proteins

    To establish infections, plant viruses effect profound alterations to host physiology that disturb endogenous processes and contribute to the development of disease symptoms. Conti et al. summarise recently described effects of Tobacco Mosaic Virus on host plant physiology. This review focuses upon the non-canonical roles of viral proteins that bring about the modulation of host […] More

  • Schematic representation of the role of cytokinins in plant growth and defence against biotrophic pathogens, and in the growth–defence trade-off.

    Should I fight or should I grow? Cytokinins in defence-growth trade-offs

    Constitutive defence activation in plants leads to resistance to a broad-spectrum of pathogens, but also frequently to stunted growth and reduced seed sets; how do plants decide whether to defend against infection or to utilise energy for growth? Plant hormones are important integrators of the physiological responses that influence the outcome of plant-pathogen interactions. Albrecht […] More

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    Phytomer development in a C4 grass

    The morphology of almost all grasses can be conceptualized as a hierarchical arrangement of subunits, termed phytomers. Therefore, knowledge of phytomer growth and development serves as a basis to elucidate the rhythm of grass growth. A recent study published in AoB PLANTS by Yang et al. provides systematic analyses of the process of phytomer development […] More

  • Antiviral innate immunity in plants.

    Antiviral innate and adaptive immunity mechanisms

    This review article summarises the molecular mechanisms of the antiviral immune system in plants and reports the latest breakthroughs relating to plant defence against viruses. Particular attention is given to the immune receptors and transduction pathways in antiviral innate immunity that are involved in pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP)-triggered immunity, effector-triggered immunity and the translational control […] More

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    Botany in the 317 years-long century…

    The Botany of Empire in the Long Eighteenth Century. Yota Batsaki, Sarah Burke Cahalan and Anatole Tchikine (Editors). Dumbarton Oaks, 2016. Notwithstanding the importance of botany to the future well-being and survival of mankind on this planet via appropriate management of plants and crops (i.e. agronomy and agriculture), the late 20th and early 21st centuries […] More

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    The role of nitrogen in plant defence

    Plants need nitrogen (N) for growth, development and defence against abiotic and biotic stresses. The widespread use of artificial N fertilisers and the agricultural impact of N nutrition on disease development have been extensively examined. In this review article, Mur et al. show that NO3– or NH4+ fertilisers affect the outcome of plant–pathogen interactions. They […] More

  • Small and large twigs

    Revising Corner’s rule: how to best partition twig leaf area

    Corner’s rule states that in woody plants, twigs (current-year shoots) with thicker stems support larger leaves. Larger leaf areas require thicker twigs for hydraulic and mechanical support, but a question remains as to why the pattern of thicker twigs resulting in larger leaves emerges, and also as to whether total leaf area should be partitioned […] More

  • Model for signalling by cooperative assembly formation (SCAF) of plant NLRs.

    Animal NLRs provide structural insights into plant NLR function

    Since the characterisation of the gene-for-gene concept in plant disease resistance by Flor in the 1940s, resistance (R) genes have played a central role in breeding resistant crops. Gene-for-gene resistance is now known to be the result of the effector-triggered immunity response in plants. Molecular characterisation of R proteins reveals that they function analogously to […] More

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    Seed priming confers rice cold tolerance during seed germination

    Mechanization and simplification are inevitable trends in agriculture to decrease input demands and simultaneously improve resource use efficiency. Dry direct-seeded rice is a resource-saving cropping system and has been considered as a replacement for traditional transplanted rice. However, the poor establishment of dry direct-seeded early rice, primarily induced by chilling stress, has limited the wide […] More

  • Light microscopy image of a cross-section of an Empetrum hermaphroditum leaf with glandular trichome (circle) and stoma (arrow) on the inner leaf surface.

    Snow addition and warming impacts on arctic leaf anatomy and gas exchange

    Climatic changes can result in modified leaf anatomy and gas exchange in arctic plants. In a one-year-old field experiment in Greenland, Schollert et al. investigate the effects of increased snow depth and warming on leaf anatomy, biogenic volatile organic compound (BVOC) emissions and CO2 exchange for the common arctic shrubs Betula nana and Empetrum nigrum […] More

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