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Plant Signal Behav. 2014;9(3):e28152. Epub 2014 Feb 20.

Memristors in plants.

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Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry; Oakwood University; Huntsville, AL USA.
Department of Neurology; University of Texas; Southwestern Medical Center; Dallas, TX USA.
Department of EECS; University of California, Berkeley; Berkeley, CA USA.


We investigated electrical circuitry of the Venus flytrap, Mimosa pudica and Aloe vera. The goal was to discover if these plants might have a new electrical component--a resistor with memory. This element was postulated recently and the researchers were looking for its presence in different systems. The analysis was based on cyclic current-voltage characteristic where the resistor with memory should manifest itself. We found that the electrostimulation of plants by bipolar sinusoidal or triangle periodic waves induces electrical responses in the Venus flytrap, Mimosa pudica and Aloe vera with fingerprints of memristors. Tetraethylammonium chloride, an inhibitor of voltage gated K(+) channels, transforms a memristor to a resistor in plant tissue. Our results demonstrate that a voltage gated K(+) channel in the excitable tissue of plants has properties of a memristor. This study can be a starting point for understanding mechanisms of memory, learning, circadian rhythms, and biological clocks.


Aloe vera; Mimosa pudica; Venus flytrap; electrophysiology; memristor; signal transduction

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