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Title: How grow-and-switch gravitropism generates root coiling and root waving growth responses in Medicago truncatula

Abstract

Experimental studies show that plant root morphologies can vary widely from straight gravity-aligned primary roots to fractal-like root architectures. However, the opaqueness of soil makes it difficult to observe how environmental factors modulate these patterns. Here, we combine a transparent hydrogel growth medium with a custom built 3D laser scanner to directly image the morphology of Medicago truncatula primary roots. In our experiments, root growth is obstructed by an inclined plane in the growth medium. As the tilt of this rigid barrier is varied, we find Medicago transitions between randomly directed root coiling, sinusoidal root waving, and normal gravity-aligned morphologies. Although these root phenotypes appear morphologically distinct, our analysis demonstrates the divisions are less well defined, and instead, can be viewed as a 2D biased random walk that seeks the path of steepest decent along the inclined plane. Features of this growth response are remarkably similar to the widely known run-and-tumble chemotactic behavior of Escherichia coli bacteria, where biased random walks are used as optimal strategies for nutrient uptake.

Authors:
; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1235130
Grant/Contract Number:  
FG02-89ER-45405
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Name: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America Journal Volume: 112 Journal Issue: 42; Journal ID: ISSN 0027-8424
Publisher:
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English

Citation Formats

Tan, Tzer Han, Silverberg, Jesse L., Floss, Daniela S., Harrison, Maria J., Henley, Christopher L., and Cohen, Itai. How grow-and-switch gravitropism generates root coiling and root waving growth responses in Medicago truncatula. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1073/pnas.1509942112.
Tan, Tzer Han, Silverberg, Jesse L., Floss, Daniela S., Harrison, Maria J., Henley, Christopher L., & Cohen, Itai. How grow-and-switch gravitropism generates root coiling and root waving growth responses in Medicago truncatula. United States. doi:10.1073/pnas.1509942112.
Tan, Tzer Han, Silverberg, Jesse L., Floss, Daniela S., Harrison, Maria J., Henley, Christopher L., and Cohen, Itai. Fri . "How grow-and-switch gravitropism generates root coiling and root waving growth responses in Medicago truncatula". United States. doi:10.1073/pnas.1509942112.
@article{osti_1235130,
title = {How grow-and-switch gravitropism generates root coiling and root waving growth responses in Medicago truncatula},
author = {Tan, Tzer Han and Silverberg, Jesse L. and Floss, Daniela S. and Harrison, Maria J. and Henley, Christopher L. and Cohen, Itai},
abstractNote = {Experimental studies show that plant root morphologies can vary widely from straight gravity-aligned primary roots to fractal-like root architectures. However, the opaqueness of soil makes it difficult to observe how environmental factors modulate these patterns. Here, we combine a transparent hydrogel growth medium with a custom built 3D laser scanner to directly image the morphology of Medicago truncatula primary roots. In our experiments, root growth is obstructed by an inclined plane in the growth medium. As the tilt of this rigid barrier is varied, we find Medicago transitions between randomly directed root coiling, sinusoidal root waving, and normal gravity-aligned morphologies. Although these root phenotypes appear morphologically distinct, our analysis demonstrates the divisions are less well defined, and instead, can be viewed as a 2D biased random walk that seeks the path of steepest decent along the inclined plane. Features of this growth response are remarkably similar to the widely known run-and-tumble chemotactic behavior of Escherichia coli bacteria, where biased random walks are used as optimal strategies for nutrient uptake.},
doi = {10.1073/pnas.1509942112},
journal = {Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America},
number = 42,
volume = 112,
place = {United States},
year = {2015},
month = {10}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1509942112

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Cited by: 3 works
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