Navigation Links
Michigan State University study sheds light on microscopic flower petal ridges
Date:12/22/2009

EAST LANSING, Mich. Microscopic ridges contouring the surface of flower petals might play a role in flashing that come-hither look pollinating insects can't resist. Michigan State University scientists and colleagues now have figured out how those form.

The result could help researchers learn to enhance plants' pollination success and even could lead to high-grip nanomaterials and "green chemical" feedstocks.

"Surprisingly, our work on plant surface biochemistry became a birds and bees and flowers story," said John Ohlrogge, MSU University Distinguished Professor of plant biology. "It's a fundamental property of plant flowers, and we've discovered a basis of how these ridges are made."

Known for 75 years, the exact biological function and nature of the flower nanoridges still eludes scientists. They might help pollinating insects grip petals, and retain glistening water droplets that could attract the visitors. Because the ridges' spacing is approximately that of visible and ultraviolet light wavelengths, moreover, some recent research suggests they produce an iridescent shimmer that attracts pollinators.

To start, visiting professor Mike Pollard and former Ohlrogge post-doctoral research associates Fred Beisson and Yonghua Li tapped new genetic information to find a mutated strain of the standard research plant Arabidopsis thaliana -- mustard weed. The petals have no such nanoridges because the mutation inhibits production of a polymer that forms the plant cuticle, which separates cell walls from plants' waxy surfaces.

Examining the mutant plants' flowers and comparing them to normal mustard plants under scanning electron microscopes, the researchers found that the ridges form from cutin polyester, not from underlying surfaces as some have speculated. How that occurs -- from surface folding or uneven synthesis of cutin polymer across the cell wall, for example, has yet to be learned.

But the research will open doors to further research based on cuticular nanostructures, the researchers noted in latest recent edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"That could include production of polyesters or related basic chemicals by genetically manipulating plants or microbes" said Beisson, now at Aix Marseille Universit in Saint-Paul-lez-Durance, France.


'/>"/>

Contact: Mark Fellows
mark.fellows@ur.msu.edu
517-884-0166
Michigan State University
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. EPA reviews Univ. of Michigan dioxin study
2. Michigan Tech scientists identify genes linked to Lou Gehrigs disease
3. Climate change driving Michigan mammals north
4. University of Michigan installs second Genomatix Genome Analyzer
5. Lake Michigan fish populations threatened by decline of tiny creature
6. Michigan Tech researchers link 11 genetic variations to type 2 diabetes
7. Newly discovered mechanism allows cells to change state
8. The impact of the diffusion of maize to the Southwestern United States
9. First comprehensive review of the state of Antarcticas climate
10. Kent State University professors focus research on the environment with grants totaling $890,000
11. Iowa State researcher produces, ships only H1N1 vaccine available for swine
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Michigan State University study sheds light on microscopic flower petal ridges
(Date:3/22/2017)... March 21, 2017 Vigilant Solutions , ... law enforcement agencies, announced today the appointment of retired ... of public safety business development. Mr. Sheridan ... experience, including a focus on the aviation transportation sector, ... recent position, Mr. Sheridan served as the Aviation Liaison ...
(Date:3/13/2017)... , March 13, 2017 Future of security: Biometric ... ... DERMALOGs Face Matching enables to match face pictures ... the basis to identify individuals. (PRNewsFoto/Dermalog Identification Systems) ... DERMALOG,s "Face Matching" is the fastest software for biometric Face ...
(Date:3/7/2017)... LAKE CITY , March 7, 2017   ... that help top global companies identify the best talent, ... as Chief Sales Officer (CSO) and Diana ... Kucer,s appointments round out a seasoned executive team poised to ... and beyond, building on a year of record bookings ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:3/23/2017)... 23, 2017  Agriculture technology company Cool Planet has ... note conversion to commercialize its Cool Terra and Cool ... developing products that are simultaneously profitable as well as ... last 18 months. This latest round of funding was ... The company,s primary product, Cool Terra, ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... 2017 Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: REGN), today announced ... U.K. Biobank and GSK to generate genetic sequence data from ... initiative will enable researchers to gain valuable insights to support ... range of serious and life threatening diseases. ... Genetic evidence has ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... SANTA MONICA, Calif. , March 22, 2017 ... Council (MassMEDIC) are proud to announce their extended partnership ... Week will be headlined by the 21 st ... UBM,s BIOMEDevice Boston, taking place May 3-4, 2017. ... with Advanced Medical Technology Association (ADVAMED) President and ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... 2017   iSpecimen ®, the marketplace ... Pathology Service (DPS), a full-service anatomic pathology reference ... United States , has joined a program offered ... (DHIN) to make human biospecimens and associated data ... program, announced in 2015 as a collaboration between iSpecimen ...
Breaking Biology Technology: