Parasitic plants use stolen genes to make them better parasites

Some parasitic plants steal genetic material from their host plants and use the stolen genes to more effectively siphon off the host's nutrients. A new study led by researchers at Penn State and Virginia Tech reveals that ...

Virus genes help determine if pea aphids get their wings

Many of an organism's traits are influenced by cues from the organism's environment. These features are known as phenotypically plastic traits and are important in allowing an organism to cope with unpredictable environments.

Four new species of plume moths discovered in Bahamas

Deborah Matthews hunts for plume moths in darkness, waiting for the halo of her headlamp to catch a brief flicker. About the size of mosquitoes, the delicate, feathery moths fly only a few feet at a time. Matthews must watch ...

Plant signals trigger remarkable bacterial transformation

The cycad Cycas revoluta is a palm-like plant that grows on rocky coastal cliffs in the sub-tropics and tropics. It has a symbiotic relationship with the Nostoc species of bacteria that can convert nitrogen from the atmosphere ...

The quest to save the banana from extinction

Panama disease, an infection that ravages banana plants, has been sweeping across Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Africa. The impact has been devastating. In the Philippines alone, losses have totalled US$400m. And the ...

Harnessing plant hormones for food security in Africa

Striga is a parasitic plant that threatens the food supply of 300 million people in sub-Saharan Africa.Scientists have found that they can take advantage of Striga's Achilles' Heel: if it can't find a host plant, it dies.The ...

Study finds natural selection favors cheaters

Mutualisms, which are interactions between members of different species that benefit both parties, are found everywhere—from exchanges between pollinators and the plants they pollinate, to symbiotic interactions between ...

Metabolite stimulates a crop while suppressing a weed

A newly discovered, naturally occurring metabolite that promotes growth in rice plants and thwarts infestation by a common parasitic plant could help improve global food security, say KAUST researchers. Plant scientists are ...

page 1 from 13