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Volume 3 Issue 8, August 2017

Orange order

The orange carotenoid protein (OCP) is a modular photoactive protein governing cyanobacterial photoprotection. Comparing a newly discovered family of OCP with the canonical form provides insight into the fine-tuning of antenna energy quenching, which will help in the engineering of ‘smart’ cyanobacterial photoprotection.

See Nature Plants 3, 17089 (2017).

Image: H. Bao, M. Sutter, B. Pattanaik, B. Montgomery & C. Kerfeld  Cover Design: L. Heslop


  • Fire has always been one of the more dramatic routes by which humanity and the plant kingdom interact. Forest management practices, urban planning and global warming are conspiring to make the relationship ever more destructive.



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Research Highlights

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News & Views

  • For multicellular organisms, long-distance communication is essential for coordination of organ growth and development. In higher plants, a dual root-to-shoot cytokinin signalling system plays a key role in adapting the growth of distant shoot organs to fluctuating environments.

    • Jean-Michel Davière
    • Patrick Achard
    News & Views
  • Understanding the impacts of government interventions intended to support rural development — such as strengthening land rights or boosting commercial agriculture — is crucial for designing better policies. Two recent studies highlight some of the complexities in measuring outcomes for people and forests.

    • Ben Phalan
    • Reem Hajjar
    News & Views
  • The evolutionary relationships between extinct species are almost exclusively based on the shape and structure of their fossil specimens. Now, a spectroscopic technique that records a ‘chemical fingerprint’ of fossil plant cuticles is being used to re-interpret the histories of thousands of specimens languishing in museum collections.

    • Jennifer C. McElwain
    News & Views
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  • A Review Article describes recent progress in plant genome editing by introducing newly developed editing tools and methods and their application. The associated challenges and future prospects are also discussed.

    • Kangquan Yin
    • Caixia Gao
    • Jin-Long Qiu
    Review Article
  • Plants have long been recognized for their therapeutic properties. Now, modern science is unravelling the mechanisms of action of ancient herbal medicines and finding new ways to exploit them.

    • Fu-Shuang Li
    • Jing-Ke Weng
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Amendments & Corrections

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