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News From the Field

Plants Use Circadian Rhythms to Prepare for Battle With Insects

February 13, 2012

image of a caterpillar on a plant In a study of the molecular underpinnings of plants' pest resistance, Rice University biologists have shown that plants use circadian rhythms to both anticipate raids by hungry insects and to time the production of defensive hormones that protect against insect attack. In this week's Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers demonstrated that when the plants' timing was shifted, they were defenseless against daytime-feeding caterpillars. Full Story

Rice University

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