Functional Plant Biology Functional Plant Biology Society
Plant function and evolutionary biology
RESEARCH ARTICLE

Sunpatiens compact hot coral: memristors in flowers

Alexander G. Volkov A B and Eunice K. Nyasani A

A Department of Chemistry, Oakwood University, 7000 Adventist Blvd, Huntsville, AL 35896, USA.

B Corresponding author. Email: agvolkov@yahoo.com

This paper originates from a presentation at the Fourth International Symposium on Plant Signaling and Behavior, Komarov Botanical Institute RAS/Russian Science Foundation, Saint Petersburg, Russia, 1923 June 2016.

Functional Plant Biology - https://doi.org/10.1071/FP16326
Submitted: 21 September 2016  Accepted: 7 February 2017   Published online: 16 March 2017

Abstract

Leon Chua postulated the theory of a memristor – a resistor with memory – in 1971, and the first solid-state memristor was built in 2008. Memristors exist in vivo as components of plasma membranes in plants, fruits, roots and seeds. A memristor is a nonlinear element; its current-voltage characteristic is similar to that of a Lissajous pattern. Here, we found memristors in flowers. Electrostimulation by bipolar periodic sinusoidal or triangular waves of an androecium, a spur, petals and a pedicel in Sunpatiens flowers induces hysteresis loops with a pinched point at low frequencies between 0.1 mHz and 1 mHz. At high frequencies, the pinched hysteresis loop transforms to a non-pinched hysteresis loop instead of a single line I = U/R for ideal memristors because the amplitude of electrical current depends on capacitance of a flower’s tissue and electrodes, frequency and direction of scanning. The discovery of memristors in Sunpatiens (Impatiens spp.) creates a new direction in the modelling and understanding of electrophysiological phenomena in flowers.

Additional keywords: Balsaminaceae, electrophysiology, Impatiens, memristor.


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