The Current Opinion journals were developed out of the recognition that it is increasingly difficult for specialists to keep up to date with the expanding volume of information published in their subject. Elsevier’s Current Opinion journals comprise of 26 leading titles in life sciences and adjacent fields.

Current Opinion in Plant Biology

5-Year Impact Factor: 7.875
Issues per year: 6 issues
Editorial Board

Current Opinion in Plant Biology

The Current Opinion journals were developed out of the recognition that it is increasingly difficult for specialists to keep up to date with the expanding volume of information published in their subject. In Current Opinion in Plant Biology, we help the reader by providing in a systematic manner:

1. The views of experts on current advances in plant biology in a clear and readable form.
2. Evaluations of the most interesting papers, annotated by experts, from the great wealth of original publications.

Division of the subject into sections: The subject of plant biology is divided into themed sections which are reviewed regularly to keep them relevant. Presently they are:
Growth and development - Genome studies and molecular genetics (+ Plant biotechnology every other year) - Physiology and metabolism - Biotic interactions - Cell signalling and gene regulation - Cell biology

Selection of topics to be reviewed: Section Editors, who are major authorities in the field, are appointed by the Editors of the journal. They divide their section into a number of topics, ensuring that the field is comprehensively covered and that all issues of current importance are emphasised. Section Editors commission reviews from authorities on each topic that they have selected.

Reviews: Authors write short review articles in which they present recent developments in their subject, emphasising the aspects that, in their opinion, are most important. In addition, they provide short annotations to the papers that they consider to be most interesting from all those published in their topic over the previous year.

Editorial Overview: Section Editors write a short overview at the beginning of the section to introduce the reviews and to draw the reader's attention to any particularly interesting developments.

Ethics in Publishing - General Statement: The Editor(s) and Publisher of this Journal believe that there are fundamental principles underlying scholarly or professional publishing. While this may not amount to a formal 'code of conduct', these fundamental principles with respect to the authors' paper are that the paper should: i) be the authors' own original work, which has not been previously published elsewhere, ii) reflect the authors' own research and analysis and do so in a truthful and complete manner, iii) properly credit the meaningful contributions of co-authors and co-researchers, iv) not be submitted to more than one journal for consideration, and v) be appropriately placed in the context of prior and existing research. Of equal importance are ethical guidelines dealing with research methods and research funding, including issues dealing with informed consent, research subject privacy rights, conflicts of interest, and sources of funding. While it may not be possible to draft a 'code' that applies adequately to all instances and circumstances, we believe it useful to outline our expectations of authors and procedures that the Journal will employ in the event of questions concerning author conduct. With respect to conflicts of interest, the Publisher now requires authors to declare any conflicts of interest that relate to papers accepted for publication in this Journal. A conflict of interest may exist when an author or the author's institution has a financial or other relationship with other people or organizations that may inappropriately influence the author's work. A conflict can be actual or potential and full disclosure to the Journal is the safest course. All submissions to the Journal must include disclosure of all relationships that could be viewed as presenting a potential conflict of interest. The Journal may use such information as a basis for editorial decisions and may publish such disclosures if they are believed to be important to readers in judging the manuscript. A decision may be made by the Journal not to publish on the basis of the declared conflict.

Best Cited over the last year.

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Evolution of flexible non-photochemical quenching mechanisms that regulate light harvesting in oxygenic photosynthesis

All photosynthetic organisms need to regulate light harvesting for photoprotection. Three types of flexible non-photochemical quenching (NPQ) mechanisms have been characterized in oxygenic photosynthetic cyanobacteria, algae, and plants: OCP-, LHCSR-, and PSBS-dependent NPQ. OCP-dependent NPQ likely evolved first, to quench excess excitation in the phycobilisome (PB) antenna of cyanobacteria. During evolution of eukaryotic algae, PBs were lost in the green and secondary red plastid lineages,…

Volume 16, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 307-314
Krishna K. Niyogi | Thuy B. Truong

ABA-dependent and ABA-independent signaling in response to osmotic stress in plants

Plants have adaptive robustness to osmotic stresses such as drought and high salinity. Numerous genes functioning in stress response and tolerance are induced under osmotic conditions in diverse plants. Various signaling proteins, such as transcription factors, protein kinases and phosphatases, play signal transduction roles during plant adaptation to osmotic stress, with involvement ranging from stress signal perception to stress-responsive gene expression. Recent progress has been made in…

Volume 21, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 133-139
Takuya Yoshida | Junro Mogami | Kazuko Yamaguchi-Shinozaki

Biochemical pathways in seed oil synthesis

•Recent research has identified new intricacies in assembly of seed oils.•Oil synthesis involves multiple subcellular compartments requiring lipid trafficking.•Phosphatidylcholine is both a central intermediate and a carrier of acyl chains.•Different plants utilize alternative pathways to produce diverse oil structures.•Major questions and unknowns are highlighted for future oilseed research. Oil produced in plant seeds is utilized as a major source of calories for human nutrition, as…

Volume 16, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 358-364
Philip D. Bates | Sten Stymne | John Ohlrogge

Ethylene signaling: Simple ligand, complex regulation

The hormone ethylene plays numerous roles in plant development. In the last few years the model of ethylene signaling has evolved from an initially largely linear route to a much more complex pathway with multiple feedback loops. Identification of key transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulatory modules controlling expression and/or stability of the core pathway components revealed that ethylene perception and signaling are tightly regulated at multiple levels. This review describes the…

Volume 16, Issue 5, 01 October 2013, Pp 554-560
Catharina Merchante | Jose M. Alonso | Anna N. Stepanova

Lights, camera, action: High-throughput plant phenotyping is ready for a close-up

© 2015 The Authors. Anticipated population growth, shifting demographics, and environmental variability over the next century are expected to threaten global food security. In the face of these challenges, crop yield for food and fuel must be maintained and improved using fewer input resources. In recent years, genetic tools for profiling crop germplasm has benefited from rapid advances in DNA sequencing, and now similar advances are needed to improve the throughput of plant phenotyping. We…

Volume 24, Issue , 01 April 2015, Pp 93-99
Noah Fahlgren | Malia A. Gehan | Ivan Baxter

ROS signaling loops - production, perception, regulation

Reactive oxygen species are recognized as important signaling components in a wide range of processes in plants and most other organisms. Reactive oxygen species are produced in different subcellular compartments in response to specific stimuli and the production is under tight control in order to avoid detrimental side-effects. Calcium signaling, protein phosphorylation and other signaling pathways are intimately involved in the control and coordination of reactive oxygen production. Any…

Volume 16, Issue 5, 01 October 2013, Pp 575-582
Michael Wrzaczek | Mikael Brosché | Jaakko Kangasjärvi

Re-constructing our models of cellulose and primary cell wall assembly

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. The cellulose microfibril has more subtlety than is commonly recognized. Details of its structure may influence how matrix polysaccharides interact with its distinctive hydrophobic and hydrophilic surfaces to form a strong yet extensible structure. Recent advances in this field include the first structures of bacterial and plant cellulose synthases and revised estimates of microfibril structure, reduced from 36 to 18 chains. New results also indicate that cellulose…

Volume 22, Issue , 01 December 2014, Pp 122-131
Daniel J. Cosgrove

Plant phenomics and high-throughput phenotyping: Accelerating rice functional genomics using multidisciplinary technologies

The functional analysis of the rice genome has entered into a high-throughput stage, and a project named RICE2020 has been proposed to determine the function of every gene in the rice genome by the year 2020. However, as compared with the robustness of genetic techniques, the evaluation of rice phenotypic traits is still performed manually, and the process is subjective, inefficient, destructive and error-prone. To overcome these limitations and help rice phenomics more closely parallel rice…

Volume 16, Issue 2, 01 May 2013, Pp 180-187
Wanneng Yang | Lingfeng Duan | Guoxing Chen | Lizhong Xiong | Qian Liu

Filamentous pathogen effector functions: Of pathogens, hosts and microbiomes

Microorganisms play essential roles in almost every environment on earth. For instance, microbes decompose organic material, or establish symbiotic relationships that range from pathogenic to mutualistic. Symbiotic relationships have been particularly well studied for microbial plant pathogens and have emphasized the role of effectors; secreted molecules that support host colonization. Most effectors characterized thus far play roles in deregulation of host immunity. Arguably, however,…

Volume 20, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 96-103
Hanna Rovenich | Jordi C. Boshoven | Bart P.H.J. Thomma

Paradigm shift in plant growth control

© 2015. For plants to grow they need resources and appropriate conditions that these resources are converted into biomass. While acknowledging the importance of co-drivers, the classical view is still that carbon, that is, photosynthetic CO 2 uptake, ranks above any other drivers of plant growth. Hence, theory and modelling of growth traditionally is carbon centric. Here, I suggest that this view is not reflecting reality, but emerged from the availability of methods and process understanding…

Volume 25, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 107-114
Christian Körner

Immune receptor complexes at the plant cell surface

Immunity to microbial infection is a common feature of metazoans and plants. Plants employ plasma membrane and cytoplasmic receptor systems for sensing microbe-derived or host-derived patterns and effectors and to trigger inducible immune defenses. Different biochemical types of plasma membrane immune receptors mediate recognition predominantly of peptide and carbohydrate patterns. Current research highlights the role of immune receptor complex formation in plant immunity. In particular, ligand…

Volume 20, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 47-54
Hannah Böhm | Isabell Albert | Li Fan | André Reinhard | Thorsten Nürnberger

Nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species in plant biotic interactions

Nitric oxide (NO) and reactive oxygen species (ROS) are important signaling molecules in plants. Recent progress has been made in defining their role during plant biotic interactions. Over the last decade, their function in disease resistance has been highlighted and focused a lot of investigations. Moreover, NO and ROS have recently emerged as important players of defense responses after herbivore attacks. Besides their role in plant adaptive response development, NO and ROS have been…

Volume 16, Issue 4, 01 August 2013, Pp 534-539
Claudia Scheler | Jörg Durner | Jeremy Astier

Improvement of phosphorus efficiency in rice on the basis of understanding phosphate signaling and homeostasis

Rice is one of the most important cereal crops feeding a large segment of the world's population. Inefficient utilization of phosphate (Pi) fertilizer by the plant in rice production increases cost and pollution. Developing cultivars with improved Pi use efficiency is essential for the sustainability of agriculture. Pi uptake, translocation and remobilization are regulated by complex molecular mechanisms through the functions of Pi transporters (PTs) and other downstream Pi Starvation Induced…

Volume 16, Issue 2, 01 May 2013, Pp 205-212
Ping Wu | Huixia Shou | Guohua Xu | Xinming Lian

Perception of the plant immune signal salicylic acid

Salicylic acid (SA) plays a central role in plant innate immunity. The diverse functions of this simple phenolic compound suggest that plants may have multiple SA receptors. Several SA-binding proteins have been identified using biochemical approaches. However, genetic evidence supporting that they are the bona fide SA receptors has not been forthcoming. Mutant screens revealed that NPR1 is a master regulator of SA-mediated responses. Although NPR1 cannot bind SA in a conventional…

Volume 20, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 64-68
Shunping Yan | Xinnian Dong

Root responses to flooding

Soil water-logging and submergence pose a severe threat to plants. Roots are most prone to flooding and the first to suffer from oxygen shortage. Roots are vital for plant function, however, and maintenance of a functional root system upon flooding is essential. Flooding-resistant plants possess a number of adaptations that help maintain oxygen supply to the root. Plants are also capable of initiating organogenesis to replace their original root system with adventitious roots if oxygen supply…

Volume 16, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 282-286
Margret Sauter

Novel insights into strigolactone distribution and signalling

Strigolactones (SLs), a group of small carotenoid-derived molecules, were first known for their function in the rhizosphere in both symbiotic and parasitic interactions. Most of the progress for deciphering SL biosynthesis and signalling pathways comes from the use of high branching mutants identified in several species demonstrating that SLs also play a hormonal role in plant development. How SLs are perceived by the different organisms on which they show bioactivity is a current major…

Volume 16, Issue 5, 01 October 2013, Pp 583-589
Alexandre de Saint Germain | Sandrine Bonhomme | François Didier Boyer | Catherine Rameau

Dosage, duplication, and diploidization: Clarifying the interplay of multiple models for duplicate gene evolution over time

Requirements to maintain dosage balance shape many genome-scale patterns in organisms, including the resolution of whole genome duplications (WGD), as well as the varied effects of aneuploidy, segmental duplications, tandem duplications, gene copy number variations (CNV), and epigenetic marks. Like neofunctionalization and subfunctionalization, the impact of absolute and relative dosage varies over time. These variations are of particular importance in understanding the role of dosage in the…

Volume 19, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 91-98
Gavin C. Conant | James A. Birchler | J. Chris Pires

Systemic signaling during plant defense

Systemic acquired resistance (SAR) is a type of pathogen-induced broad-spectrum resistance in plants. During SAR, primary infection-induced rapid generation and transportation of mobile signal(s) 'prepare' the rest of the plant for subsequent infections. Several, seemingly unrelated, mobile chemical inducers of SAR have been identified, at least two of which function in a feed-back regulatory loop with a lipid transfer-like protein. Signal(s) perception in the systemic tissues relies on the…

Volume 16, Issue 4, 01 August 2013, Pp 527-533
Aardra Kachroo | Guillaume P. Robin

Ambient temperature signalling in plants

Plants are exposed to daily and seasonal fluctuations in temperature. Within the 'ambient' temperature range (about 12-27°C for Arabidopsis) temperature differences have large effects on plant growth and development, disease resistance pathways and the circadian clock without activating temperature stress pathways. It is this developmental sensing and response to non-stressful temperatures that will be covered in this review. Recent advances have revealed key players in mediating temperature…

Volume 16, Issue 5, 01 October 2013, Pp 661-666
Philip A. Wigge

Diversity and specificity: Auxin perception and signaling through the TIR1/AFB pathway

Auxin is a versatile plant hormone that plays an essential role in most aspects of plant growth and development. Auxin regulates various growth processes by modulating gene transcription through a SCF TIR1/AFB -Aux/IAA-ARF nuclear signaling module. Recent work has generated clues as to how multiple layers of regulation of the auxin signaling components may result in diverse and specific response outputs. In particular, interaction and structural studies of key auxin signaling proteins have…

Volume 21, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 51-58
Renhou Wang | Mark Estelle

Progress, challenges and the future of crop genomes

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. The availability of plant reference genomes has ushered in a new era of crop genomics. More than 100 plant genomes have been sequenced since 2000, 63% of which are crop species. These genome sequences provide insight into architecture, evolution and novel aspects of crop genomes such as the retention of key agronomic traits after whole genome duplication events. Some crops have very large, polyploid, repeat-rich genomes, which require innovative strategies for sequencing,…

Volume 24, Issue , 01 April 2015, Pp 71-81
Todd P. Michael | Robert VanBuren

Plant sphingolipids: Function follows form

Plant sphingolipids are structurally diverse molecules that are important as membrane components and bioactive molecules. An appreciation of the relationship between structural diversity and functional significance of plant sphingolipids is emerging through characterization of Arabidopsis mutants coupled with advanced analytical methods. It is increasingly apparent that modifications such as hydroxylation and desaturation of the sphingolipid nonpolar long-chain bases and fatty acids influence…

Volume 16, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 350-357
Jonathan E. Markham | Daniel V. Lynch | Johnathan A. Napier | Teresa M. Dunn | Edgar B. Cahoon

Transcriptional control of plant defence responses

Mounting of efficient plant defence responses depends on the ability to trigger a rapid defence reaction after recognition of the invading microbe. Activation of plant resistance is achieved by modulation of the activity of multiple transcriptional regulators, both DNA-binding transcription factors and their regulatory proteins, that are able to reprogram transcription in the plant cell towards the activation of defence signalling. Here we provide an overview of recent developments on the…

Volume 20, Issue , 01 January 2014, Pp 35-46
Pierre Buscaill | Susana Rivas

Embolism resistance as a key mechanism to understand adaptive plant strategies

One adaptation of plants to cope with drought or frost stress is to develop wood that is able to withstand the formation and distribution of air bubbles (emboli) in its water conducting xylem cells under negative pressure. The ultrastructure of interconduit pits strongly affects drought-induced embolism resistance, but also mechanical properties of the xylem are involved. The first experimental evidence for a lower embolism resistance in stems of herbaceous plants compared to stems of their…

Volume 16, Issue 3, 01 June 2013, Pp 287-292
Frederic Lens | Aude Tixier | Hervé Cochard | John S. Sperry | Steven Jansen | Stephane Herbette

Exocyst complexes multiple functions in plant cells secretory pathways

The exocyst is a complex of proteins mediating first contact (tethering) between secretory vesicles and the target membrane. Discovered in yeast as an effector of RAB and RHO small GTPases, it was also found to function in land plants. Plant cells and tissues rely on targeted exocytosis and this implies that the exocyst is involved in regulation of cell polarity and morphogenesis, including cytokinesis, plasma membrane protein recycling (including PINs, the auxin efflux carriers), cell wall…

Volume 16, Issue 6, 18 November 2013, Pp 726-733
Viktor Žárský | Ivan Kulich | Matyáš Fendrych | Tamara Pečenková