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Ashley Yeager
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Plants’ ATP collector found

Using mouse-ear cress, or Arabidopsis thaliana, scientists identified the molecule that pulls ATP into plant cells.

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The molecule that pulls ATP — a universal compound used for energy inside and signaling outside of cells — into plant cells has finally been found.

ATP increases calcium inside plant cells, but how the compound is brought into a cell was unclear. Working with the flowering plant Arabidopsis thaliana, scientists identified two genes, dorn1-1 and dorn1-2, for molecules, or receptors, that pull ATP into plant cells.

The ATP plant receptor is structurally much different from those identified, and well-studied, in animals and probably helps plants adapt to changing environments, researchers report January 16 in Science.

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