Because of the very low nitrate levels found in arctic tundra soil, scientists had assumed that plants in this biome do not use nitrate. But a new study co-authored by four Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) Ecosystems Center scientists challenges this notion. The study has important implications for predicting which arctic plant species will dominate as the climate warms, as well as how much carbon tundra ecosystems can store.
The research, done in collaboration with the University of Cordoba, recognizes the potential and high quality of these olive oils.
Soil salinity poses a major threat to food security, greatly reducing the yield of agricultural crops. Rising global temperatures are expected to accelerate the buildup of salt in soil, placing an increasing burden on agricultural production. In a new study published in The Plant Cell, a team of researchers identified a gene that limits yield losses in rice plants exposed to salt stress and deciphered the underlying mechanism.
Logging activities in biodiverse forests can have a huge negative impact on wildlife, particularly large species such as big cats, but a new study proves that the Western Hemisphere's largest cat species--the jaguar (Panthera onca)--can do well in logging concessions that are properly managed, according to conservationists from the San Diego Zoo Global and the Bronx Zoo-based WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society).
Researchers have identified a receptor on plant stem cells that can issue different instructions about how to grow. Tweaking this pathway can lead to bigger fruits or more seeds in important food crops.
Bioinformatics specialists from the University of Würzburg have studied a specific class of hormones which is relevant for plants, bacteria and indirectly for humans, too. Their results challenge previous scientific assumptions.
Researchers at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and UC Berkeley have discovered that as plants develop they craft their root microbiome, favoring microbes that consume very specific metabolites. Their study could help scientists identify ways to enhance the soil microbiome for improved carbon storage and plant productivity.
A return to firewood is bad for forests and the climate. So reports William Schlesinger, President Emeritus of the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, in an Insights article published today in the journal Science.
Biological rhythms are ubiquitous in nature, from the beating of the heart to the rhythms of flowering plants. A research team led by the Spanish researcher, Paloma Mas, has shown that the two main cellular oscillators -- the circadian clock and the cell cycle -- are closely connected. The study demonstrates that the circadian clock controls the speed of the cell cycle, regulating the cell division and growth in synchronization with the day and night cycles.
The orchid species Gastrodia pubilabiata mimics rotting mushrooms or fermented fruit, and is pollinated by fruit flies who mistakenly lay their eggs in its flowers. If there are rotting mushrooms near the orchid, its pollination rate increases. As well as using mushrooms to attract insect pollinators, G. pubilabiata survives by absorbing nutrients from the fungal hyphae of mushrooms. This is the first time a plant has been discovered to depend on mushrooms both above and below ground.