A new research found that plants get stressed similar to animals and it’s a severely impacting process to crops worldwide. The discovery was made by researchers at the University of Adelaide, finding that plant life responds to the ever changing environment and may even be stressed by poor conditions.
It was well known for a while that plants produce gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) when under stress, the animal neurotransmitter being prompted by things such as drought, viruses, acidic soils or extreme temperatures that make it difficult to grow. However, it has been recently discovered that GABA is a stress signal in plants.
It results in electrical impulses that can affect the plant’s growth rate, which is for example shortened in periods of very high temperatures or poor conditions. By emitting the GABA compound, they essentially deal with stress and signal it, similar to the one found in animal’s brains.
However, unlike animals who have a long line of cells who communicate stress messages from one to another, plants have a cell-to-cell system that’s virtually present in every tissue. The neurotransmitter moves from one to the other very quickly, resulting in electrical signals associated with stress.
While nearly identical to the GABA compound found in animals, there is a difference in proteins that separates the plant life with the animal kingdom. They interact similarly with the neurotransmitter, but it’s understandably different, confirmed by the fact that stress does not inhibit animal growth.
The new discovery may prove to be just the right step forward in technological advancement in both understanding and developing crop-saving drugs or other types of methods that will make them more resilient. With issues of climate change, it’s quite clearly that plant life will be gravely affected and the stress will not bode well for agriculture.
By using these new findings, researchers might be able to provide them with the proper protection and means for preventing stress. Since a massage is not exactly appropriate for plant life, it may result in the invention of new substances to alleviate their stress, which could help with problems of food shortage worldwide.
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