Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Plants discriminate between self and non self

10.08.2005


Two peas in a pod may not be so friendly when planted in the ground and even two parts of the same plant, once separated may treat the former conjoined twin as an alien "enemy," according to a Penn State researcher.



"We were looking at how plants determine who is a competitor when competing with other roots for limited resources," says Dr. Omer Falik, postdoctoral researcher in plant ecology. "There is no reason for roots to fight if they belong to the same plant."

The question was, do plants recognize their own roots and avoid competing with them and how do they do this? Working with common garden peas, Falik worked with Dr. Ariel Novoplansky at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Israel. The researchers used plants that had two roots and planted them in a chamber that forced them to grow a specified distance from each other and from roots of a neighboring plant.


"We found that the roots grew significantly more and longer secondary roots on the non-self side," Falik told attendees at the 90th Annual Meeting of the Ecological Society of America today (Aug 8) in Montreal, Canada.

The mechanism for this self/non-self discrimination could be based on either individually specific chemical recognition – such as that known from plant reproductive systems -- or physiological coordination between roots that belong to the same plant. To test this, the researchers used plants that had two roots and two shoots and split them into two separate plants that were genetically identical, but physiologically separated. The plants acted as if their separated twin was a non-self plant, even though genetically it was identical. "This eliminated the possibility that the mechanism was based on specific chemical recognition," says Falik. "The results prove that at least in the studied plants, self/non-self root discrimination is based on physiological coordination between roots belonging to the same plant. Such coordination might be based on internal pulsing of hormonal or electrical signals which desynchronize when the plants are separated."

Falik is currently working with Dr. David Eissenstat, professor of woody plant physiology and Dr. Roger Koide, professor of horticultural ecology on examining how the latitude of a plants origin affects the respiratory responses of plant roots and mycorrhizal fungi to soil temperatures.

A’ndrea Elyse Messer | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.psu.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Nesting aids make agricultural fields attractive for bees
20.07.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht The Kitchen Sponge – Breeding Ground for Germs
20.07.2017 | Hochschule Furtwangen

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

Leipzig HTP-Forum discusses "hydrothermal processes" as a key technology for a biobased economy

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Researchers create new technique for manipulating polarization of terahertz radiation

20.07.2017 | Information Technology

High-tech sensing illuminates concrete stress testing

20.07.2017 | Materials Sciences

First direct observation and measurement of ultra-fast moving vortices in superconductors

20.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>