Connecting the pieces: uncovering the molecular basis for long‐distance communication through plant grafting

Thomas, H. R., & Frank, M. H. (2019). Connecting the pieces: uncovering the molecular basis for long-distance communication through plant grafting. New Phytologist.

SCImago Journal & Country Rank

Vascular plants are wired with a remarkable long-distance communication system. This network can span from as little as a few centimeters (or less) in species like Arabidopsis, up to 100 meters the tallest giant sequoia, linking distant organ systems into a unified, multicellular organism. Grafting is a fundamental technique that allows researchers to physically break apart and reassemble the long-distance transport system, enabling the discovery of molecular signals that underlie intraorganismal communication. In this review, we highlight how plant grafting has facilitated the discovery of new long-distance signaling molecules that function in coordinating developmental transitions, abiotic and biotic responses, and cross-species interactions. This rapidly expanding area of research offers sustainable approaches for improving plant performance in the laboratory, the field, the orchard, and beyond.

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