From Haustorium 76: Mistletoe (Viscum album) and its hosts in Britain

Viscum album, the only native British mistletoe, is rich in associated folklore, and commercially important for the Christmas markets and its medicinal uses. Like all mistletoes, it is a hemiparasite, photosynthetic, and attached only to the host xylem, initial contact with which stimulates hypertrophy of the host tissue. It is hence a gallcauser, inducing variable […]

From Haustorium 76: Dodder plant poses threat to trees and crops

Kakamega Forest Senior Manager George Aimo said the dodder plant is a major threat to trees and crops. When Samuel Onyango, a smallholder farmer from Kisumu County, first noticed yellowish spaghetti-like leafless vines hanging loosely on his fence some three years ago, he did not bother about them. Little did he know that it was […]

New editor: Susann Wicke

My research centers around the causes and consequences of heterotrophy in plants. Specifically, the goal of my work is to understand the eco-evolutionary and functional-genomic bases of organismal interaction between parasitic plants and their environment. My group prioritizes research on ecological and molecular adaptations associated with parasitism to obtain fundamental insights into the course of […]

New member at large Luiza Teixeira-Costa, PhD

My research in parasitic plant biology encompasses the broad diversity of these plants, from mistletoes, to the cryptic Rafflesiaceae, and the widely known Cuscuta. Using a variety of methods, from plant morphology and physiology, to phylogenetic analyses, I investigate haustorium development and evolution across the different clades among which parasitic plants have evolved. I’m also interested […]

New paper: Compensatory sequence variation between trans-species small RNAs and their target sites

Link to paper By: Nathan R Johnson, Claude W dePamphilis, Michael J Axtell Trans-species small regulatory RNAs (sRNAs) are delivered to host plants from diverse pathogens and parasites and can target host mRNAs. How trans-species sRNAs can be effective on diverse hosts has been unclear. Multiple species of the parasitic plant Cuscuta produce trans-species sRNAs that collectively target many […]

New paper: Growth-defense tradeoffs and source-sink relationship during both faba bean and lentil interactions with Orobanche crenata Forsk

Link to paper by: Mounia Ennami, Joseph Mbasani-mansi, Fatima Zahra Briache, Nada Oussible, Fatima Gaboun, Lamiae Ghaouti, Loubna Belqadi, Michel Edmond Ghanem, Kamal Aberkani, James Westwood, Rachid Mentag   Orobanche infections reduce biomass of hosts at the first stages of infection on both contrasting faba bean cultivars. It is likely that plant growth-defense tradeoffs have a […]

Plant Physiology Focus Issue on Parasitic Plants

Parasitic plants can connect to the vasculature of a host plant from which they take part or all of the water, nutrients, and assimilates they need to complete their life cycle. This parasitic lifestyle required that these parasitic plants evolved host detection, host attachment, host exploitation, and host defense suppression strategies. The elucidation of these […]

IPPS elected two new board members

Editor: Susann Wicke, Humboldt-University of Berlin, Germany Member at large: Dr Luiza Teixeira-Costa, Department of Organismic & Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University Herbaria, 22 Divinity AvenueCambridge, MA 02138, USA […]

WCPP2019: both scientifically and socially excellent

The 15th World Congress on Parasitic Plants (WCPP) meeting took place in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, from 30 June to 5 July. Over 110 participants attended the meeting from different parts of the world. The meeting was excellent both scientifically and socially; both the location and the weather were beautiful! I would like to thank Harro […]