The mathematics of sexual attraction
Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, P-2780-156 Oeiras, Portugal and Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Ciências, Depto. Biologia Vegetal, Campo Grande C2, P-1749-016 Lisboa, Portugal
Journal of Biology 2010, 9:18 doi:10.1186/jbiol233Published: 29 March 2010
Pollen tubes follow attractants secreted by the ovules. In a recent paper in BMC Plant Biology, Stewman and colleagues have quantified the parameters of this attraction and used them to calibrate a mathematical model that reproduces the process and enables predictions on the nature of the female attractant and the mechanisms of the male response.