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Do plants and animals differ in phenotypic plasticity?

Borges, Renee M (2005) Do plants and animals differ in phenotypic plasticity? In: Journal of Biosciences, 30 (1). pp. 41-50.

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Abstract

This paper compares the flexibility in the nexus between phenotype and genotype in plants and animals. These taxa although considered to be fundamentally different are found to be surprisingly similar in the mechanisms used to achieve plasticity. Although non-cognitive behaviour occurs in plants, its range is limited, while morphological and developmental plasticity also occur to a considerable extent in animals. Yet both plants and animals are subject to unique constraints and thus need to find unique solutions to functional problems. A true comparison between the plant and animal phenotype would be a comparison between plants and sessile photosynthesizing colonial invertebrates. Such comparisons are lacking. However, they would provide important insights into the adaptive significance of plasticity in these groups. It is also suggested that a comparison of inflexible traits in these groups would provide an understanding of the constraints, as well as the costs and benefits,of a plastic versus non-plastic phenotype in plants and animals.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: The Copyright belongs to Indian Academy of Sciences.
Keywords: Epigenetic inheritance;plant behaviour;plant communication;polyphenism;reaction norm
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2006
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2010 04:24
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ernet.in/id/eprint/5656

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