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Latest Chloroplast Stories

Nanotechnology Could Create Bionic Plants
2014-03-18 04:47:12

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A team of MIT researchers writing in the journal Nature Materials say they have discovered the first steps in a new field of science known as "plant nanobionics." The researchers found that they were able to boost a plant’s ability to capture light energy by 30 percent by embedding carbon nanotubes in the chloroplast. They were also able to use another type of carbon nanotube to modify the plants to detect nitric oxide. "Plants...

2013-10-14 09:48:27

New research from the University of California, Davis, shows that the tiny proportion of a cell's DNA that is located outside the cell nucleus has a disproportionately large effect on a cell's metabolism. The work, with the model plant Arabidopsis, may have implications for future treatments for inherited diseases in humans. Plant and animal cells carry most of their genes on chromosomes in the nucleus, separated from the rest of the cell. However, they also contain a small number of genes...

2013-07-10 15:19:39

Photosynthesis takes place in specialized membrane systems, made up of stacked disks linked together by unstacked planar leaflets. An LMU team has now identified a protein that tucks the membrane in at the edge of each stack. By making use of sunlight to generate molecular oxygen and other energy-rich chemical compounds that other organisms can utilize as nutrients, photosynthesis provides the basis for almost all life on Earth. Radiant energy from the Sun is captured by pigment-protein...

Key To Controlling Fruit Ripening Could Be In The Functions Of Chloroplasts
2012-11-01 14:51:47

University of Leicester Biologists may have unearthed the potential to manipulate the functions of chloroplasts, the parts of plant cells responsible for photosynthesis. Researchers in the University of Leicester's Department of Biology discovered that chloroplasts are affected by the ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) — a process which causes the breakdown of unwanted proteins in cells, previously thought to only act on central parts of the cell. As a result, the researchers...

Marine Microbes Engage In Unusual Symbiosis
2012-09-22 09:56:42

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A study published in this week's issue of Science shows how tiny, single-celled algae and a highly specialized bacteria have formed a partnership that helps keep the ocean fertilized.  This symbiotic pair takes nitrogen from the atmosphere and "fixes" it into a form that other organisms can use. The results of the study emerged from the investigation of a mysterious nitrogen-fixing microbe that has a very small genome. ...

Programmed Cell Death Explained By Lace Plants
2012-07-25 08:21:31

Programmed cell death (PCD) is a highly regulated process that occurs in all animals and plants as part of normal development and in response to the environment. New research published in BioMed Central's open access journal BMC Plant Biology is the first to document the physiological events in the lace plant (Aponogeton madagascariensis) which occur via PCD to produce the characteristic holes in its leaves. The aquatic lace plant, endemic to Madagascar, uses PCD to generate holes in its...

2012-02-28 11:47:38

The major difference between plant and animal cells is the photosynthetic process, which converts light energy into chemical energy. When light isn't available, energy is generated by breaking down carbohydrates and sugars, just as it is in animal and some bacterial cells. Two cellular organelles are responsible for these two processes: the chloroplasts for photosynthesis and the mitochondria for sugar breakdown. New research from Carnegie's Eva Nowack and Arthur Grossman has opened a window...

2011-12-05 10:00:00

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Sapphire Energy, Inc., one of the world leaders in algae-based crude oil, today announced that Nucleic Acids Research Journal has published its white paper, "An exogenous chloroplast genome for complex sequence manipulation in algae." As the site of photosynthesis in plants and algae, the chloroplast is responsible for producing organic molecules from atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and is thus a crucial metabolic engineering target....

2011-11-04 23:04:27

The discovery of a new gene is helping researchers at Michigan State University envision more-efficient molecular factories of the future. A team of researchers, led by Katherine Osteryoung, MSU plant biologist, announced the discovery of Clumped Chloroplasts — a new class of proteins — in the current issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. CLMP1 plays a key role in helping chloroplasts, which carry out the life-sustaining process of photosynthesis,...

2011-10-19 12:55:53

RUB biologists publish new model for protein transport in plant cells How the light-harvesting complexes required for photosynthesis get to their site of action in the plant cell is reported by RUB biologists in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. The team led by Prof. Dr. Danja Schünemann (RUB working group on the molecular biology of plant organelles) has demonstrated for the first time that a membrane protein interacts with a single soluble protein to anchor the subunits...