Fruit fracture biomechanics and the release of Lepidium didymum pericarp-imposed mechanical dormancy by fungi

Autor(en): Sperber, Katja
Steinbrecher, Tina
Graeber, Kai
Scherer, Gwydion
Clausing, Simon
Wiegand, Nils
Hourston, James E.
Kurre, Rainer 
Leubner-Metzger, Gerhard
Mummenhoff, Klaus 
Stichwörter: BRASSICACEAE; CELL-WALL; CLADOSPORIUM-SPHAEROSPERMUM; EVOLUTION; GENES; IMAGE-ANALYSIS; INDEHISCENT FRUITS; Multidisciplinary Sciences; Science & Technology - Other Topics; SEASONAL EMERGENCE; SEED-GERMINATION; SOIL
Erscheinungsdatum: 2017
Herausgeber: NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP
Journal: NATURE COMMUNICATIONS
Volumen: 8
Zusammenfassung: 
The biomechanical and ecophysiological properties of plant seed/fruit structures are fundamental to survival in distinct environments. Dispersal of fruits with hard pericarps ( fruit coats) encasing seeds has evolved many times independently within taxa that have seed dispersal as their default strategy. The mechanisms by which the constraint of a hard pericarp determines germination timing in response to the environment are currently unknown. Here, we show that the hard pericarp of Lepidium didymum controls germination solely by a biomechanical mechanism. Mechanical dormancy is conferred by preventing full phase-II water uptake of the encased non-dormant seed. The lignified endocarp has biomechanically and morphologically distinct regions that serve as predetermined breaking zones. This pericarp-imposed mechanical dormancy is released by the activity of common fungi, which weaken these zones by degrading non-lignified pericarp cells. We propose that the hard pericarp with this biomechanical mechanism contributed to the global distribution of this species in distinct environments.
ISSN: 20411723
DOI: 10.1038/s41467-017-02051-9

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