Bacterial arsenic efflux genes enabled plants to transport boron efficiently     2019/10/30 17:27

Stubby roots, brittle branches, poor fertility -- these are some of the symptoms which can occur in the case of boron deficiency in plants. Thanks to transport proteins called Nodulin26-like-intrinsic-proteins (NIPs), modern seed plants can efficiently take up and distribute this essential micronutrient. However, this ability was not always inherent to plants. Researchers have now uncovered that the enigmatic functional origin of NIPs lies within genetically encoded arsenic detoxification units of bacteria.

New evidence that bacteria drive biodiversity in the Cape Floral Region     2019/10/30 15:00

South African botanists have found evidence that the largest Cape geophyte genus, Oxalis, has developed a unique association with the bacterial genus Bacillus, that help it to fix nitrogen from the air and to perform extraordinary feats of germination. Furthermore, they demonstrate that the Bacillus bacteria are so integrated into this symbiotic relationship that they are even inherited from mother plant to seed. This is the first report of such a system of vertical inheritance of endophyte bacteria for geophytes.

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