|Publication Type:||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication:||2010|
|Authors:||Brooks, TLDurham, Miller, ND, Spalding, EP|
Plant development is genetically determined but it is also plastic, a fundamental duality that can be investigated provided large number of measurements can be made in various conditions. Plasticity of gravitropism in wild-type Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) seedling roots was investigated using automated image acquisition and analysis. A bank of computer-controlled charge-coupled device cameras acquired images with high spatiotemporal resolution. Custom image analysis algorithms extracted time course measurements of tip angle and growth rate. Twenty-two discrete conditions defined by seedling age (2, 3, or 4 d), seed size (extra small, small, medium, or large), and growth medium composition (simple or rich) formed the condition space sampled with 1,216 trials. Computational analyses including dimension reduction by principal components analysis, classification by k-means clustering, and differentiation by wavelet convolution showed distinct response patterns within the condition space, i.e. response plasticity. For example, 2-d-old roots (regardless of seed size) displayed a response time course similar to those of roots from large seeds (regardless of age). Enriching the growth medium with nutrients suppressed response plasticity along the seed size and age axes, possibly by ameliorating a mineral deficiency, although analysis of seeds did not identify any elements with low levels on a per weight basis. Characterizing relationships between growth rate and tip swing rate as a function of condition cast gravitropism in a multidimensional response space that provides new mechanistic insights as well as conceptually setting the stage for mutational analysis of plasticity in general and root gravitropism in particular.
|Short Title:||Plant Physiology|