Spatiotemporal dynamics of the electrical network activity in the root apex

Year: 2009

Authors: Masi E., Ciszak M., Stefano G., Renna L., Azzarello E., Pandolfi C., Mugnai S., Baluska F., Arecchi F.T., Mancuso S.

Autors Affiliation: Department of Horticulture, International Laboratory of Plant Neurobiology, University of Florence, Viale delle idee 30, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino (FI), Italy; CNR-Istituto Nazionale di Ottica Applicata, Largo E. Fermi 6, 50125 Firenze, Italy; Institut fur Zellulare und Molekulare Botanik, University of Bonn,
Kirschallee 1, Bonn, Germany; Department of Physics, University of Florence, Via G. Sansone 1, 50019 Sesto Fiorentino (FI), Italy

Abstract: The study of electrical network systems, integrated with chemical signaling networks, is becoming a common trend in contemporary biology. Classical techniques are limited to the assessment of signals from doublets or triplets of cells at a fixed temporal bin width. At present, full characteristics of the electrical network distribution and dynamics in plant cells and tissues has not been established. Here, a 60-channels multielectrode array (MEA) is applied to study spatiotemporal characteristics of the electrical network activity of the root apex. Both intense spontaneous electrical activities and stimulation-elicited bursts of locally propagating electrical signals have been observed. Propagation of the spikes indicates the existence of excitable traveling waves in plants, similar to those observed in non-nerve electrogenic tissues of animals. Obtained data reveal synchronous electric activities of root cells emerging in a specific root apex region. The dynamic electrochemical activity of root apex cells is proposed to continuously integrate internal and external signaling for developmental adaptations in a changing environment.


Volume: 106 (10)      Pages from: 4048  to: 4053

More Information: This work was supported by the Ente Cassa di Risparmio di Firenze (S. Mancuso) and a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship within the 6th European Community Framework Program (to M. C.).
KeyWords: Action potential; article; electric activity; electrode; electrostimulation; excitability; molecular dynamics; nerve conduction; nonhuman; plant cell; plant root; plant tissue; priority journal; signal transduction; spike wave, Action Potentials; Calcium; Electrodes; Electrophysiological Phenomena; Glutamic Acid; Kinetics; Meristem; Plant Roots; Time Factors; Zea mays, Animalia
DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0804640106

Citations: 99
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