Plant cell walls reveal steps for controlling plant growth

Plant cell walls are vital for plant growth, and a new research project is uncovering their secrets. The assembly of components of the plant cell wall regulates growth of root hairs. Plant roots are covered in fine hairs which seek out nutrients in the soil and allow more water and nutrients to be absorbed.

“Plant sciences have become a major new driver of international research due to their central role as renewable sources of transport fuels, as functional foods to improve human health, and as a source of raw materials for industrial processes,” study co-author Professor Tony Bacic said.

The root hair is a single tubular cell which grows out from the plant’s root surface. It is surrounded by a wall rich in complex carbohydrates and glycoproteins which strengthens the cell.

A deeper understanding of plant cell walls will allow for better control of plant growth.

Read more at The University of Melbourne