Plant Volatiles


Plant Volatiles.
I ran across an article that deals with the aromas of plants and their volatiles and how the aromas move. I find this to very interesting because of the discussion of diffusing included in the article. I am going to divide it into numbered paragraphs to make the discussion easier. 
(1) A Purdue University team of scientists upended a long-held assumption about how plant volatile compounds, the chemicals that are responsible for scent, move to the outside of the cells to attract pollinators, defend the plant and perform other key functions. 
(2) Natalia Dudareva, distinguished professor of biochemistry and the project's principal investigator, said volatile compounds are actively trafficked out of cells through the use of ATP-binding cassette transporter, which moves substances across cell membranes. 
(3) Ms. Dudareva said,"People assumed emission of volatile compounds from plant tissues was simple diffusion. Nobody considered it could be active transport". 
(4) She goes on to say that, "If diffused, volatile compounds would simply move in an unregulated manner from one area of high concentration inside of the cell to low concentration outside of the cell".  

#1- The study was a pretty special interest neutral study, ie; not any real agenda or special interest money to pave the way for a predetermined outcome.  Just a good old study to gain understanding. 
#2- Here they discuss the mechanism responsible for the movement of aromas. This also shows that an aroma is not just "something" that smells. An aroma is made of actual molecules.  This a hung concept that people dealing with aromatherapy really needs to get. An aroma is an actual molecule. I know some people get that, but most people just don't get it, that an aroma is a molecule. That is huge, but what is even huger, bigger is the whole concept of how it is transported. How it moves across the cell membranes. Which leads us to the next paragraph. Here they discuss the actual facilitator. Understanding that ATP-binding is the mechanism is huge, huge, big time. This is what actually moves nutrients from outside of the cell to the inside of the cell.Think nutrition, medicine, water, and the list goes on and on. The aroma is molecule just like anything else that moves in and out of a cell. Which that leads to another possibility, not discussed in the study,  that being, is there an element of intelligence within the aroma molecule? Perhaps so. If so that could logically explain a lot of material. 
#3- People have the long-held belief that it was simple diffusion. simple diffusion is identified as an equalization of sorts. IE; movement of a substance from a high concentration to an area of a low concentration of the substance.  Ie; in even more simple terms, water seeking its own level. But it is not that way at all. It is an active intelligent process.  This opens up all sort of interesting concepts to explore and discuss. Changes the whole diffusing concepts on its end. I am excited because it explains and helps me to understand some anomalies that keep showing up when trying to work with diffusing type blends, I had had to work around them because of the old mindset of equalization that is taught in advanced blending. Now I understand what is actually going on, makes life more simple. In working with this stuff for years, I have observed that the equalization process is not what is really going on, had to control for it, and now I see what the actual process is, it makes perfect sense. The ATP, concept is huge and groundbreaking. 
#4- The whole idea of the unregulated diffusion is out the window. The documented ATP process is now on the table. I love good research.

 

Kent King

Kent King