Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Environmental Factors Linked To Sex Ratio Of Plants Discovered

Date:
July 23, 2008
Source:
University of Toronto
Summary:
Environmental factors can transform the ratio of females to males in plant populations according to new research. The authors suggest that when females capture large amounts of pollen, female-determining pollen tubes out-compete male-determining pollen tubes to fertilize the single ovule in each flower.

Environmental factors can transform the ratio of females to males in plant populations according to new research out of the University of Toronto.

Related Articles


The study conducted by Ivana Stehlik, a lecturer, Jannice Friedman, a PhD candidate, and Spencer Barrett, a professor, involved a novel approach using genetic markers (known DNA sequences) to identify the sex of seeds. The team investigated six natural populations of the wind-pollinated herb Rumex nivalis in the Swiss Alps and mapped the distance between females and neighbouring males. They then measured the amount of pollen captured by female flowers and collected seeds from the plants when they were mature.

"The plant has strongly female-biased flowering sex ratios in these populations. We wanted to find out the mechanism causing the bias," said Barrett. "We found that where there were more males surrounding females, females captured more pollen, matured more seed and produced more strongly female-biased offspring."

The authors suggest that when females capture large amounts of pollen, female-determining pollen tubes out-compete male-determining pollen tubes to fertilize the single ovule in each flower.

Barrett leads a world-renowned research group working on the genetics and evolution of plant reproduction. His pioneering work has had a profound influence on the understanding of biological invasions, weed management strategies and conservation biology. "Our results demonstrate for the first time that demographic aspects of the mating environment of plants can influence the sex ratios of plants females produce," added Barrett.

The study findings are published in the current edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Toronto. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Toronto. "Environmental Factors Linked To Sex Ratio Of Plants Discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 July 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080722113027.htm>.
University of Toronto. (2008, July 23). Environmental Factors Linked To Sex Ratio Of Plants Discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 20, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080722113027.htm
University of Toronto. "Environmental Factors Linked To Sex Ratio Of Plants Discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/07/080722113027.htm (accessed April 20, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, April 20, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Deepwater And Dolphins: The Oil Spill's Impact 5 Years On

Newsy (Apr. 20, 2015) Five years on, the possible environmental impact of the Deepwater Horizon spill includes a sustained die-off of bottlenose dolphins, among others. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

Five Years Later, the BP Oil Spill Is Still Taking Its Toll

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) On April 20, 2010, an explosion and fire on the Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico started the biggest oil spill in US history. BP recently reported the Gulf is recovering well, but scientists paint a different picture. Duration: 02:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thai Customs Seize African Elephant Tusks Worth $6 Mn

Thai Customs Seize African Elephant Tusks Worth $6 Mn

AFP (Apr. 20, 2015) Thai customs seize four tonnes of African elephant ivory worth $6 million at a Bangkok port in a container labelled as beans. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Un-Bee-Lievable: Bees on the Loose After Washington Truck Crash

Un-Bee-Lievable: Bees on the Loose After Washington Truck Crash

Reuters - US Online Video (Apr. 17, 2015) A truck carrying honey bees overturns near Lynnwood, Washington, spreading boxes of live bees across the highway. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins