Feeling sleepy

Medicago truncatula Like most anim­als, plants also sleep at night. At least, many do, but not, unfor­tu­nately, Arabidopsis, and our sci­entific over-reliance on this one spe­cies has hampered under­stand­ing of nyctinasty, sleep­ing move­ments of leaves. A new com­men­trary in PNAS dis­cusses the genetic basis for sleepy plants, and is well worth a read:

Genetic basis of the “sleep­ing leaves” revealed. PNAS USA 6 July 2012, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1209532109

See also:

Conserved genetic determ­in­ant of motor organ iden­tity in Medicago trun­catula and related legumes. PNAS USA, 11 June 2012, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1204566109


Ann Bot is a gestalt entity who works in the office for the Annals of Botany.