Frazier, Calvo & Lee: The Neuro-Power of Movement in Plants
The next meeting of the seminar is planned for March, 5th, at 12:45 (CET) – note the change of the hour. Our guest will be Paco Calvo. We will discuss a draft paper by P. Adrian Frazier, Paco Calvo and David N. Lee, The Neuro-Power of Movement in Plants.
The paper has no official abstract yet but here’s the first paragraph:
The idea that plants are intelligent might not be a surprise to readers of Darwin’s “The Power of Movement in Plants”, published in 1880 and written with the help of his son, Francis. Drawing comparisons between plant and animal movements, and between root tips and the brains of lower animals, Darwin stopped just short of making an explicit argument for the intelligence of plants (cf. his arguments for earthworm intelligence in his 1881 book). He was particularly impressed by the fact that sensors could be located one place (the tips) and their eﬀect (turgidity, or cell elongation) observed somewhere else, which he described as a “transmission of inﬂuence” from sensor to motor. Noting that plants have no nerves, he suggested that animal nerves are not for transmission, per se, but for more precise transmission. Darwin’s observations set the stage for the ﬁeld of plant neurobiology, whose mission has been to put psychological meat
on the bare bones of Darwin’s suggestions.
The seminar is focused on discussing the papers, in a reading group style. The speaker first introduces the main theses of the paper (for around ten minutes), and then the floor is open for comments. In the online version of the seminar, the questions must be first signaled briefly on the chat to manage the flow of the discussion.
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