News from the Department of Molecular Plantphysiology and Biophysics

Remote control for stomatal movement. Green light can activate the GtACR1 channel in guard cells that surround an open pore (left). Active GtACR1 channels release chloride ions, which automatically also causes the efflux of potassium ions and the release of water (middle). Because of slackening of the guard cells the stomatal pores in the leaf surface close (right).

Remote Control for Plants

With two additional genes for the enzyme dioxygenase and the light-controlled anion channel ACR1, the tobacco plant can channel salt ions across the cell membrane when exposed to green light. The success can be seen in the experiment: While pollen tubes normally grow in the direction of the egg cell for fertilization, in genetically modified cells they change the direction of growth depending on the exposure to light.

A boost for plant research

Normal and malformed leaves oft the Australian pitcher plant.

How Climate Caprices can Trigger Plants

The Venus flytrap has a unique arrangement of its vascular tissue (centre). This network enables the plant to process fast stimuli, similar to the nervous system of animals. Now it has been possible to investigate these stimuli without contact using novel magnetic field detectors (right).

Venus Flytrap Generates Magnetic Fields

News from the Biocentre

Malaise traps are highly suitable for collecting a variety of insect species in different habitats.

Insects in the Light of Land Use and Climate

Structure of the poxvirus-polymerase in an early stage of transcription. Bound DNA is labelled in blue.

How Poxviruses Multiply

Ecosystem with alpine vegetation at Mount Kilimanjaro.

Diversity matters

Three important pollinators in Europe (from left): hummingbird hawk-moth (Macroglossum stellatarum), the yellow loosestrife bee (Macropis europaea) and the common blue butterfly (Polyommatus icarus).

Safeguarding European Wild Pollinators