Latest articles

 

09607412
Exposing enzymes
Autumn 2016
31 October 2016

It was proposed that CSE functioned in the monolignol pathway in Arabidopsis thaliana in 2014, indicating that loss of function of CSE leads to a reduction in lignin content and a small decrease in plant growth, although the phenotypes are much less severe than in those observed with loss of function of the two preceding enzymes in the lignin pathway in Arabidopsis. Since then, the role of CSE in lignin biosynthesis has been questioned in several species, in part through the inability to demonstrate the activity of the enzyme. The pathway via CSE is certainly counter-intuitive, as it involves the cleavage of a thioester linkage and its subsequent re-formation, involving the hydrolysis of an extra molecule of ATP.

TN
Seeds for the future
Autumn 2016
31 October 2016

As the proverb says “All the flowers of tomorrow are in the seeds of today”. The same goes for the food crops that need to feed our growing population. Until now, food security has tended to focus on the mature plant and its yield, however we are now beginning to understand the critical influence of the events preceding and during germination. Seeds may be tiny, but they are complex worlds of development and change. During the session ‘Seed Biology – From Laboratory to Field’ at the SEB Annual Meeting in Brighton, we heard from the pioneers of this field, and how they hope to unlock the potential of seeds to sow the harvests of the future.

JXB
Succinct articles now highlight excellent research in JXB every month
Spring 2016
18 March 2016

Peppery notes are part of the character of a good Syrah (or Shiraz) wine and favourite herbs like rosemary and thyme. They come from rotundone, and research reported by Drew et al. and Takase et al. in JXB has now identified the enzymes responsible for the synthesis of the precursor of this compound, alpha-guaiene, and for its conversion to the finished, and rather elusive, product.

09607412
Enabling functional studies of individual cells in plant tissues
Spring 2016
18 March 2016

Multicellular organisms are composed of many cell types that perform discrete functions acquired via controlled patterns of gene expression and are dictated in part by cell type-specific promoter activity. In order to understand the contribution of these specialized cell types in the development of a whole organism it is necessary to isolate or analyse different cell types separately.