Electrical signaling in plants: Without neurons, a way to regulate and organize

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Electrical signaling in plants attracts the attention of both biologists and electrical engineers because of its fast transmission over long distances in plants. Electrical signaling can be intracellular or intercellular. Evidence suggests that such signaling mechanisms can facilitate vital activities in plants such as respiration, photosynthesis, movements as well as water uptake. Electrical signaling operates during stress responses. A local electrical potential is generated during stress responses. However, the action potential is able to transmit long distances and its role has been experimented in biologically closed circuits of Venus flytrap. Action potential involves influx and efflux of ions. Slow-wave potential occurs during changes in turgor pressure. Conducting tissues such as xylem and phloem also possess appreciable electrical resistance and conductance properties. Xylem is a dead tissue. However, it is able to conduct electrical impulses. In this way, xylem offers unique opportunity for engineers to unravel the mechanisms of electrical signaling in plants. Such research may also resolve multiple issues related to the fact of how plants conduct signals without neurons. Studies on natural sensors and transducers present in different parts of the plants can inspire novel upcoming bio-inspired engineering designs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-197
Number of pages4
JournalResearch Journal of Biotechnology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 06-2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology


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