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Plant neurobiology and green plant intelligence: science, metaphors and nonsense


Struick, PC and Yin, X and Meinke, HB, Plant neurobiology and green plant intelligence: science, metaphors and nonsense, Journal of The Science of Food and Agriculture, 88, (3) pp. 363-370. ISSN 0022-5142 (2008) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1002/jsfa.3131


This paper analyses the recent debates on the emerging science of plant neurobiology, which claims that the individual green plant should be considered as an intelligent organism. Plant neurobiology tries to use elements from animal physiology as elegant metaphors to trigger the imagination in solving complex plant physiological elements of signalling, internal and external plant communication and whole-plant organisation. Plant neurobiology proposes useful concepts that stimulate discussions on plant behaviour. To be considered a new science, its added value to existing plant biology needs to be presented and critically evaluated. A general, scientific approach is to follow the so-called 'parsimony principle', which calls for simplest ideas and the least number of assumptions for plausible explanation of scientific phenomena. The extent to which plant neurobiology agrees with or violates this general principle needs to be examined. Nevertheless, innovative ideas on the complex mechanisms of signalling, communication, patterning and organisation in higher plants are badly needed. We present current views on these mechanisms and the specific role of auxins in regulating them.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences
Research Group:Crop and pasture production
Research Field:Crop and pasture biochemistry and physiology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences
UTAS Author:Meinke, HB (Professor Holger Meinke)
ID Code:71500
Year Published:2008
Web of Science® Times Cited:24
Deposited By:Research Division
Deposited On:2011-07-20
Last Modified:2012-02-20

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