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Title: Burning questions for a warming and changing world: 15 unknowns in plant abiotic stress

We present unresolved questions in plant abiotic stress biology as posed by 15 research groups with expertise spanning eco-physiology to cell and molecular biology. Common themes of these questions include the need to better understand how plants detect water availability, temperature, salinity, and rising carbon dioxide (CO2) levels; how environmental signals interface with endogenous signaling and development (e.g. circadian clock and flowering time); and how this integrated signaling controls downstream responses (e.g. stomatal regulation, proline metabolism, and growth versus defense balance). The plasma membrane comes up frequently as a site of key signaling and transport events (e.g. mechanosensing and lipid-derived signaling, aquaporins). Adaptation to water extremes and rising CO2 affects hydraulic architecture and transpiration, as well as root and shoot growth and morphology, in ways not fully understood. Environmental adaptation involves tradeoffs that limit ecological distribution and crop resilience in the face of changing and increasingly unpredictable environments. Exploration of plant diversity within and among species can help us know which of these tradeoffs represent fundamental limits and which ones can be circumvented by bringing new trait combinations together. Better defining what constitutes beneficial stress resistance in different contexts and making connections between genes and phenotypes, and between laboratory and field observations, are overarching challenges.

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Award ID(s):
1900567 1951244 2017949 2119820
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; more » ; « less
Publisher / Repository:
Oxford University Press
Date Published:
Journal Name:
The Plant Cell
Page Range / eLocation ID:
p. 67-108
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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