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Plants, put in the dark, reveal over 100 active peroxisome proteins Plants, put in the dark, reveal over 100 active peroxisome proteins

A new study identifies 111 peroxisomal proteins, including six newly identified ones, in dark-treated plants. It is part of an effort to fully map the functions of plant peroxisomes.

October 1, 2018 Tags: Hu lab, fundamental research
Stressed plant roots warn the rest of the plant of looming dangers Stressed plant roots warn the rest of the plant of looming dangers

When facing drought or heat stress, roots are advance scouts that warn the rest of the plant to prepare for the big 'hit.'

September 25, 2018 Tags: Brandizzi lab, fundamental research
Blazes of light reveal how plants signal danger over long distances Blazes of light reveal how plants signal danger over long distances

A multi-university study reveals how plant communication systems respond to threats from herbivores. Once wounded, plants use calcium signals to warn distant tissues of future attacks.

September 24, 2018 Tags: Howe lab, fundamental research
As climate changes, plants might not suck carbon from the air fast enough As climate changes, plants might not suck carbon from the air fast enough

Atmospheric scientists factor lesser known photosynthesis research into their models. The result: carbon levels in the air could be much higher by 2100 than previously predicted.

September 13, 2018 Tags: Sharkey lab, fundamental research
Keeping up with lipids on the move: a new molecular tracking method Keeping up with lipids on the move: a new molecular tracking method

Scientists have created a new tracking method for plant lipids. The approach could fill our knowledge gaps of lipid movement and help us improve yields in crops targeted for biofuels.

June 29, 2018 Tags: Benning lab, fundamental research
Microbiologists and plant scientists find secret to tackling cholera [LINK] Microbiologists and plant scientists find secret to tackling cholera [LINK]

While cholera rages across many regions of the world, a team of microbiologists and plant scientists from the Benning lab has pinpointed a genetic weakness in the pandemic’s armor, which could lead to future treatments.

June 26, 2018 Tags: Benning lab, fundamental research
Two plant cell 'hotspots' tell the cell where to import its resources Two plant cell 'hotspots' tell the cell where to import its resources

The two proteins, called VAP, indicate where endocytosis, a form of transport in which a living cell imports molecules, should occur.

June 19, 2018 Tags: Stefano, Brandizzi lab, fundamental research
Study shows how a gene helps plants manage their protein production in stressful times Study shows how a gene helps plants manage their protein production in stressful times

The NPR1 gene keeps the unfolded protein response, a plant fail-safe for stressful times, in check.

June 12, 2018 Tags: Brandizzi lab, fundamental research
SPL1 protein plays a positive role in building plant cell peroxisomes SPL1 protein plays a positive role in building plant cell peroxisomes

Understanding how the plant cell's food processors are built might help us breed better plants and even benefit human medicine.

May 29, 2018 Tags: Hu lab, fundamental research
When lipids meet hormones: plants' answer to complex stresses When lipids meet hormones: plants' answer to complex stresses

How plants harvest their own chloroplasts - photosynthesis machines that make their food - to help defend against outside threats.

May 7, 2018 Tags: Benning lab, future scientists, fundamental research
Stress tested: how algae change their internal solar panels to stay alive Stress tested: how algae change their internal solar panels to stay alive

The natural solar panels constantly grow and shrink in size to adjust to changes in their hosts' environments. Scientists want to tap into this energy source for biofuels and food purposes.

February 21, 2018 Tags: Benning lab, Kramer lab, fundamental research
How detecting light in the water affects how much food cyanobacteria get How detecting light in the water affects how much food cyanobacteria get

Scientists have linked how water-dwelling bacteria monitor light wavelengths in their surroundings with their capacity to do photosynthesis. The research has medical/biofuels implications.

February 15, 2018 Tags: fundamental research, Montgomery lab
SP1 protein interacts with three energy-related cellular organelles SP1 protein interacts with three energy-related cellular organelles

The protein, which helps to construct peroxisomes, also interacts with chloroplasts and mitochondria. The organelles are important for generating and managing plant energy supplies.

February 5, 2018 Tags: Hu lab, fundamental research
Reviewing photosynthesis in dynamic conditions: Photosystem I as a guard Reviewing photosynthesis in dynamic conditions: Photosystem I as a guard

The fundamental protein complex potentially guards plants from high light and ageing effects. This new observation could change how we view photosynthesis.

January 22, 2018 Tags: Froehlich, fundamental research
Growing a garden in space Growing a garden in space

Scientists are studying how plants adapt to space environments. The NASA funded research aims to help us grow fresh produce beyond the planet Earth.

December 19, 2017 Tags: fundamental research, Brandizzi lab
How plants 'muscle up' as they prep for the cold How plants 'muscle up' as they prep for the cold

A protein that helps plants prepare for the cold also helps them beef up for bacterial attacks, as a precautionary measure.

December 7, 2017 Tags: fundamental research, Thomashow lab
Fighting plant disease at warm temperatures keeps food on the table [VIDEO] Fighting plant disease at warm temperatures keeps food on the table [VIDEO]

The Nature Communications study shows how high temperature weakens plant defenses while, separately, strengthening bacterial attacks.

November 27, 2017 Tags: He lab, fundamental research
How to build artificial nanofactories to power our futures: Logistics How to build artificial nanofactories to power our futures: Logistics

A peek into the logistics of how bacterial nanofactories move electrons, towards creating chemical products. Future apps include renewable energy and medical tools.

October 31, 2017 Tags: Kerfeld lab, fundamental research
Taking the brakes off plant production: not so good after all Taking the brakes off plant production: not so good after all

When engineers want to speed up a system, they look for the slowest steps and make them faster. In plants, this approach potentially does more harm than good, says the Kramer lab.

October 10, 2017 Tags: Kanazawa, Kramer lab, fundamental research
Identifying a new family of light-responsive proteins Identifying a new family of light-responsive proteins

The new family of proteins protects cyanobacteria from sunlight damage, and they are interesting for use in synthetic medical or renewable energy applications.

October 2, 2017 Tags: Kerfeld lab, Montgomery lab, fundamental research

Top Stories

Why this promising biofuel crop takes a summer break Why this promising biofuel crop takes a summer break

By explaining a photosynthetic peculiarity in switchgrass, MSU researchers from the Walker lab may have unlocked even more of the plant’s potential.

Untying molecular knots: Making molecular simulations more efficient with LongBondEliminator Untying molecular knots: Making molecular simulations more efficient with LongBondEliminator

Researchers from the Vermaas lab created a more efficient tool to solve the problem of ring piercings in molecular simulations. This work is published in Biomolecules.

From colleagues to collaborators, a cross-department conversation links statistics to plant science From colleagues to collaborators, a cross-department conversation links statistics to plant science

Complicated sets of biological data can be challenging to extrapolate meaningful information from. Wanting to find a better way to look at this data led Berkley Walker, assistant professor at the MSU-DOE Plant Research Laboratory, to team up with statistician and Assistant Professor Chih-Li Sung from the Department of Statistics and Probability.