Magnetic field effects on plant growth, development, and evolution

Front Plant Sci. 2014 Sep 4;5:445. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00445. eCollection 2014.


The geomagnetic field (GMF) is a natural component of our environment. Plants, which are known to sense different wavelengths of light, respond to gravity, react to touch and electrical signaling, cannot escape the effect of GMF. While phototropism, gravitropism, and tigmotropism have been thoroughly studied, the impact of GMF on plant growth and development is not well-understood. This review describes the effects of altering magnetic field (MF) conditions on plants by considering plant responses to MF values either lower or higher than those of the GMF. The possible role of GMF on plant evolution and the nature of the magnetoreceptor is also discussed.

Keywords: cryptochrome; evolution; geomagnetic field; magnetoreception; plant responses.

Publication types

  • Review