Volume 1 Issue 6 June 2015

Volume 1 Issue 6

Bacteria target photosynthesis 

Chlorophyll fluorescence captures changes in photosynthetic efficiency of Photosystem II in Arabidopsis leaves following infection with Pseudomonas.

See de Torres Zabala et al. 1, 15074 (2015)

K. Moore from an image by Marta de Torres Zabala


  • Editorial |

    Botany underpins the modern world, not only agriculture but medicine, material science, chemistry and much more. Yet it has been belittled to the point where even the name botany is out of favour; too outdated for a modern science. Thankfully botanical researchers continue to look forward, not back.


  • Comment |

    Consistent with their historical focus on the functional utility of plants, botanical gardens have an important opportunity to help ensure global food and ecosystem security by expanding their living collections, research and education programmes to emphasize agriculture and its impacts.

    • A. J. Miller
    • , A. Novy
    • , J. Glover
    • , E. A. Kellogg
    • , J. E. Maul
    • , P. Raven
    •  & P. Wyse Jackson

Research Highlights

News & Views

  • News and Views |

    One of the world's most important staple crops, the sweet potato, is a naturally transgenic plant that was genetically modified thousands of years ago by a soil bacterium. This surprising discovery may influence the public view of GM crops.

    • Jonathan Jones
  • News and Views |

    Plant defence against pathogens requires energy, which is provided by photosynthesis. But in addition to this indirect supply role, the photosynthetic light reaction is an active player in fighting off bacteria.

    • Vera Göhre


  • Review Article |

    Rubisco catalyses the conversion of atmospheric CO2 into organic compounds in photosynthesis, and therefore plays a pivotal role in plant metabolism. The complex cellular machineries invovled in the assembly and metabolic repair of this most abundant enzyme are explored in this Review.

    • Thomas Hauser
    • , Leonhard Popilka
    • , F. Ulrich Hartl
    •  & Manajit Hayer-Hartl


  • Article |

    Invasive Centaurea solstitialis (yellow starthistle) is larger than in its native range as declines in native competitors make water more available. Such opening of niches may be a factor in the widespread success of invasives.

    • Katrina M. Dlugosch
    • , F. Alice Cang
    • , Brittany S. Barker
    • , Krikor Andonian
    • , Sarah M. Swope
    •  & Loren H. Rieseberg
  • Article |

    The balance of beneficial and detrimental effects of nitrogen-fixing plants hinges on the degree to which plants regulate fixation to meet their needs. Legumes show a large diversity of fixation regimes due to differing evolutionary strategies.

    • Duncan N. L. Menge
    • , Amelia A. Wolf
    •  & Jennifer L. Funk
  • Article |

    The natural variation in an Arabidopsis population contributed to variation in root-associated bacteria. This variation affected the plants’ fitness showing that small host-mediated changes in the microbiome can have large effects on host health.

    • Cara H. Haney
    • , Buck S. Samuel
    • , Jenifer Bush
    •  & Frederick M. Ausubel
  • Article |

    Innate immunity is the first layer of defence in plants. However, pathogens inject effectors that supress this mechanism. Here the authors show that photosynthesis is a key component of plant defence, and that chloroplasts are targeted by pathogens.

    • Marta de Torres Zabala
    • , George Littlejohn
    • , Siddharth Jayaraman
    • , David Studholme
    • , Trevor Bailey
    • , Tracy Lawson
    • , Michael Tillich
    • , Dirk Licht
    • , Bettina Bölter
    • , Laura Delfino
    • , William Truman
    • , John Mansfield
    • , Nicholas Smirnoff
    •  & Murray Grant
  • Article |

    Gibberellin is a major hormone in plant growth. Mixing old-style grafting with modern molecular genetics in Arabidopsis shows that the GA12 precursor is the chemical form of gibberellin undergoing long-distance transport across plant organs.

    • Thomas Regnault
    • , Jean-Michel Davière
    • , Michael Wild
    • , Lali Sakvarelidze-Achard
    • , Dimitri Heintz
    • , Esther Carrera Bergua
    • , Isabel Lopez Diaz
    • , Fan Gong
    • , Peter Hedden
    •  & Patrick Achard