RESOURCES: Stressed-Out Plants

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Science  21 Sep 2001:
Vol. 293, Issue 5538, pp. 2175
DOI: 10.1126/science.293.5538.2175e

Hot summer days may be ideal for a trip to the beach, but the heat can traumatize plants like lettuce, peas, and wheat that prefer cooler temperatures. Drought, heat, cold, high salinity, mineral deficiency, and toxic minerals can all cause stress for plants. Because plants grow slowly under these conditions, plant stress hampers world crop production. This site, launched last year by an Israeli scientist, offers original review articles on the six major causes of plant stress, as well as copies of recent abstracts, news clips on global vegetation stress, and a discussion board. One way scientists are tackling plant stress is through transgenic plants with genes that heighten resilience, and the site offers an update on current projects. There is also a database with references for more than 5000 research articles stretching back to 1930.


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