Skip to main content
Email Print Share

News From the Field

A Bit Touchy: Plants' Insect Defenses Activated by Touch

April 9, 2012

This material is available primarily for archival purposes. Telephone numbers or other contact information may be out of date; please see current contact information at media contacts.

A study by Rice University scientists reveals that plants can use the sense of touch to fight off fungal infections and insects. The study, published in the April 24 issue of Current Biology finds the first evidence that plant resistance--activated by the plant hormone jasmonate--is triggered by touch. In a study of Arabidopsis thaliana, biochemists found that touched plants had increased levels of jasmonate and increased resistance to insects and fungal disease. Full Story

Rice University

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency that supports fundamental research and education across all fields of science and engineering. In fiscal year (FY) 2017, its budget is $7.5 billion. NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and other institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 48,000 competitive proposals for funding and makes about 12,000 new funding awards.

mail icon Get News Updates by Email 

Useful NSF Web Sites:
NSF Home Page:
NSF News:
For the News Media:
Science and Engineering Statistics:
Awards Searches: