Plant that fix atmospheric nitric oxide

Discussion in 'Earth Science' started by Plazma Inferno!, Jun 14, 2016.

  1. Plazma Inferno! Ding Ding Ding Ding Administrator

    The emissions of nitrogen oxides are mainly caused by combustion processes in industrial facilities and engines. In humans, the gaseous pollutants particularly irritate the mucous membranes in the respiratory organs and eyes. Until now it was assumed that plants cannot absorb atmospheric NO.
    Now, scientists of Helmholtz Zentrum München have now discovered that Arabidopsis thaliana plants can fix atmospheric nitric oxide (NO) with the aid of plant hemoglobin proteins. Using this previously unknown mechanism, these plants can contribute to the improvement of air quality.
    ajanta likes this.
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  3. exchemist Valued Senior Member

    This unassuming weed, Arabidopsis thaliana, a rock cress called "thale cress", seems rather charmingly useful:

    It grows naturally by roadsides (plenty of NOx there!) and colonises waste ground and poor soil, no doubt using this ability to capture NO. It is also a model organism in biology having had its genome completely sequenced. And at a push, we can eat it, as it is a member of the brassicas.

    How splendid!
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