A team of biologists from Riverside University presented a chemical that allows plants to retain moisture for longer, writes “Agro-Center”.
The new development will help farmers grow plants despite climate change and droughts. The study was published in “EurekAlert!” Drought is a major cause of crop failure worldwide. A chemical called Opabactin (OP – from “overpowered”) will hold water inside the plants and slow down its release.
Opabactin works like abscisic acid or ABA, the natural hormone that plants produce during drought. ABK slows down the growth of the plant a little, so it consumes less water than usual.
However, ABK is too unstable and expensive, so biologists have analyzed millions of different molecules to find a replacement for the natural hormone. Opabactin works almost instantly and 10 times better than ABK.