Journal Article

Haustoria of <i>Cuscuta japonica</i>, a Holoparasitic Flowering Plant, Are Induced by the Cooperative Effects of Far-Red Light and Tactile Stimuli

Yoshifumi Tada, Michizo Sugai and Katsuhisa Furuhashi

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 37, issue 8, pages 1049-1053
Published in print December 1996 | ISSN: 0032-0781
e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordjournals.pcp.a029052
Haustoria of Cuscuta japonica, a Holoparasitic Flowering Plant, Are Induced by the Cooperative Effects of Far-Red Light and Tactile Stimuli

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  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular and Cell Biology
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When seedlings of Cuscuta japonica were grown with Vigna radiata (the host plant) in a flower pot for 6 d under white light and then irradiated with far-red or blue light (ca. 6 μmol photons m−2 s−1), the seedlings parasitized V. radiata. However, no parasitism of the seedlings was observed under red or white light or in darkness. The parasitic behavior of seedlings of C. japonica was observed even if an acrylic rod was used as a substitute for the host plant. Upon incubation under far-red light, the seedling twined tightly around the rod and developed haustoria towards it. Haustoria also developed when apical and subapical regions of seedlings were held between two glass plates that were about 0.7 mm apart and were irradiated with far-red light. However, no haustoria were induced by either the hold or irradiation alone. These results indicate that parasitism of Cuscuta japonica is controlled by the cooperative effects of two physical signals, far-red light and appropriate tactile pressure. Our findings suggest that parasitism by the genus Cuscuta involves a novel strategy.

Keywords: Cuscuta japonica; Far-red light; Haustoria; Parasitism; Tactile stimuli

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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