#GS3 #Science&Technology #Agriculture
A new discovery related to plants’ defence mechanisms against pathogens has the potential to pave the way for healthier, more resistant and productive crops.
- Plants have a unique ability to safeguard themselves against pathogens and resist infection: A flood of calcium surrounds their pores — or stomata — triggering them to close.
- This much was known by scientists, but it was unclear exactly how calcium would enter the plant cells.
- The stomata are encircled by two guard cells that respond to the calcium signals telling them to either expand or contract.
- This triggers innate immune signals and initiates the plants’ defense response.
- The calcium cannot directly pass through guard cell membranes, so, a protein called OSCA1.3 forms a channel leaking calcium to the cells.
- A study by an international team of scientists — including those from the University of Maryland (UMD), United States — claimed this to be the work of a protein called OSCA1.3 that formed a channel leaking calcium to the cells.