Navigation Links
Explaining why pruning encourages plants to thrive
Date:9/22/2009

Scientists have shown that the main shoot dominates a plant's growth principally because it was there first, rather than due to its position at the top of the plant.

Collaborating teams from the University of York in the UK and the University of Calgary in Canada combined their expertise in molecular genetics and computational modelling to make a significant discovery that helps explain why pruning encourages plants to thrive.

Understanding of the action and interaction of these hormones can inform horticultural practices aimed at changing branching patterns in diverse crops.

The research was funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC) and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

Led by Professors Ottoline Leyser and Przemyslaw Prusinkiewicz and published by the journal PNAS, the research showed that all shoot tips on a plant can influence each other's growth.

Professor Leyser, of the University of York's Department of Biology, said: "It is well known that the main growing shoot of a plant can inhibit the growth of the shoots below that's why we prune to encourage growth of branches. What we are interested in is exactly how the main shoot can exert this effect.

"It has been known since the 1930s that the plant hormone auxin is released by the plant's actively growing tip and is transported down the main stem where it has an indirect effect on buds to inhibit branching. There are a number of ways in which the hormone exerts this effect and we have discovered a new path by which it works."

The research suggests that for a shoot tip to be active, it must be able to export auxin into the main stem. But if substantial amounts of auxin already exist in the main stem, export from an additional shoot tip cannot be established.

Professor Leyser said: "Using this mechanism, all the shoot tips on a plant compete with each other, so that tips both above and below can influence each other's growth. This allows the strongest branches to grow the most vigorously, wherever they may be on the plant. The main shoot dominates mostly because it was there first, rather than because of its position at the apex of the plant."

The teams went on to show that the recently discovered plant hormone, strigolactone, works at least in part by making it harder to establish new auxin transport pathways from shoot tips, strengthening the competition between auxin sources and reducing branching.


'/>"/>

Contact: David Garner
dcg501@york.ac.uk
44-190-443-2153
University of York
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. IEEE-USA position encourages energy efficiency to save households money, reduce carbon emissions
2. Evolution coup: Study reveals how plants protect their genes
3. Getting plants to rid themselves of pesticide residues
4. Plants on steroids: Key missing link discovered
5. Houseplants cut indoor ozone
6. Missouri Botanical Garden hosts historic meeting to discuss endangered plants in the Caucasus region
7. Discovering soybean plants resistant to aphids and a new aphid
8. Climate-caused biodiversity booms and busts in ancient plants and mammals
9. Fossil plants bring Wilf distinguished speaker honor
10. University of Toronto helps to barcode the worlds plants
11. UBC researchers help push for standard DNA barcodes for plants
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/9/2017)... MELBOURNE , Australia , March ... clinical study data at the prestigious World Lung Imaging ... Dr. Andreas Fouras , was invited to deliver ... and pulmonary medicine. This globally recognised event brings together ... and share the latest developments in lung imaging. ...
(Date:3/7/2017)... Brandwatch , the leading social intelligence company, today announces that it ... insights to support its reporting, help direct future campaigns, and share ... charity will be using Brandwatch Analytics social listening and analytics technology ... the topics and issues that are a priority for its supporters. ... "Until recently we,ve ...
(Date:3/6/2017)... 6, 2017 Mintigo , the ... announced Predictive Sales Coach TM , its new ... intelligence into Salesforce. This unique AI application will ... organizations with deep knowledge of their customers and ... engagement. Predictive Sales Coach extends Mintigo,s existing customer ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/24/2017)... YORK , March 24, 2017 ... ended the trading session at 5,817.69, down 0.07%; the ... at 20,656.58; and the S&P 500 closed at 2,345.96, ... as 4 sectors closed in green, 4 sectors finished ... day. This Friday, Stock-Callers.com has initiated reports coverage on ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... ... 2017 , ... AxioMed president, Jake Lubinski, describes the AxioMed ... deformed, which is identical to how the human discs work to distribute force. ... to its natural state along a hysteresis curve, exactly like a healthy human ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... 2017  Northwest Biotherapeutics (OTCQB: NWBO) (NW Bio), ... for solid tumor cancers, today announced that yesterday ... announced last Friday, March 17, 2017. ... securities totaling 28,843,692 shares, comprised of 18,843,692 common ... of Class C Warrants pre-funded at the closing ...
(Date:3/23/2017)... PARK, Calif., March 23, 2017  BioPharmX Corporation ... products for the dermatology market, today reported financial ... 31, 2017, and will provide an update on ... the year. "We are pleased to ... year for BioPharmX," said President Anja Krammer. "We ...
Breaking Biology Technology: