Navigation Links
Plants discover the benefits of good neighbors in strategy against herbivores
Date:3/9/2010

Scandinavian Scientists have discovered that a species of tree defends itself from herbivore attack by using chemicals emitted by neighbouring plants. The study, published today in New Phytologist, reveals how a species of birch tree adsorbs chemical compounds from neighbouring marsh tea plants, Rhondodendron tomentosum, in a unique 'defence by neighbour strategy.'

The team from Finland, led by Prof. Jarmo Holopainen from the University of Eastern Finland, were conducting studies into emissions of forest and peat land plants when they discovered previously unreported compounds for mountain birch from their foliage emissions. The compounds were emitted by a species of rhododendron growing nearby.

"It is well known that many plant species start to emit chemical compounds after damage by herbivores," said the co-author Dr. Sari Himanen, from Agrifood Research Finland. "In an earlier study we accessed the compounds emitted from mountain birch following Moth feeding damage and we found that some of the trees growing next to Rhondodendron tomentosum also emitted residual amounts of the compounds ledene, ledol and palustrol. This resulted in the idea to experimentally test whether these sticky semivolatiles could actually protect neighbouring birch trees from the attention of attacking herbivores such as feeding moths. Based on experimentation in the field, in a natural habitat and in the laboratory, we discovered that a novel, potentially also ecologically meaningful effect for neighbour-emitted foliage-adsorbed semi-volatiles might take place in a boreal environment."

Plant emissions can have several roles, including the attraction or deterrence of herbivores. Some cause an indirect defence by attracting a herbivorous natural enemy, but it is extraordinary for one plant to benefit directly from another plant's emissions.

The study also seems to confirm Scandinavian folklore which held that rhododendrons can be used to protect clothes.

"In earlier times branches of R. tomentosum were collected and put together with woolly winter clothes for summer storage in the attic," said Professor Holopainen. "Clothes and furs adopted the distinctive smell and were also protected against damage from clothes moths and fur moths."

"Our results show that interactions between species through emissions are a good example of the ecological effects that need to be considered more from a plant community than from a individual plant point of view" concluded Himanen. "Passive adsorption of compounds by a neighbouring plant might be an important, but understudied, way for these compounds to act in a natural environment and could be an important factor in plant fitness and species distribution."


'/>"/>

Contact: Ben Norman
Lifesciencenews@wiley.com
44-012-437-70375
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Bone marrow cell transplants to benefit those with heart disease
2. DNA sequencing unlocks relationships among flowering plants
3. From carnivorous plants to the medicine cabinet?
4. New material mimics bone to create better biomedical implants
5. Moss helps chart the conquest of land by plants
6. Smart coating opens door to safer hip, knee and dental implants
7. Invasive plants are beneficiaries of climate change in Thoreaus woods
8. Changing flowering times protect tobacco plants against insect herbivory
9. Can modern-day plants trace their New Zealand ancestry?
10. How plants feel the temperature rise
11. Virus may chauffeur useful packages into plants
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/9/2016)... , UAE, May 9, 2016 ... when it comes to expanding freedom for high net ... Even in today,s globally connected world, there is ... conferencing system could ever duplicate sealing your deal with ... obtaining second passports by taking advantage of citizenship via ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... , April 27, 2016 ... the  "Global Multi-modal Biometrics Market 2016-2020"  report to ... ) , The analysts forecast the ... CAGR of 15.49% during the period 2016-2020.  ... number of sectors such as the healthcare, BFSI, ...
(Date:4/13/2016)... April 13, 2016  IMPOWER physicians supporting Medicaid patients ... a new clinical standard in telehealth thanks to a ... the higi platform, IMPOWER patients can routinely track key ... body mass index, and, when they opt in, share ... visit to a local retail location at no cost. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/22/2016)... NEW YORK , June 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... the growing next generation sequencing (NGS) market include ... adoption of smaller sequencers.  More accessible and affordable ... led to growing demand for consumables including sample ... The Market for Sample Preparation for Next ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... ... June 22, 2016 , ... Quantitative Radiology Solutions, the ... current participant in the Phase 1 Ventures program, is leveraging regional and federal ... Radiology Solutions helps physicians make better treatment decisions by quantifying medical imaging using ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... ... June 21, 2016 , ... New light-based technologies that facilitate a ... — promise to enable both compact, wearable devices for point-of-care diagnostics as well as ... skin. , Recent work and visionary future directions are detailed in a new open-access ...
(Date:6/22/2016)... SAN DIEGO , June 22, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... that has developed a testing platform designed specifically ... the formation of their scientific advisory board (SAB). ... of directors, the SAB is chartered to advise ... infectious disease assay platform. Led by Dr. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: