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Extracellular ATP as a novel regulator of signalling and development

Since we discovered that extracellular ATP can regulate plant cytosolic free Ca2+ (1) it has become clear that this signalling system is involved in pathogen responses, development and cell death (2,3). How it all works remains unclear. G proteins have a possible role in transmitting the signal to plasma membrane Ca2+ channels and from there the link is to production of reactive oxygen species (3). In this project, the signalling jigsaw will be pieced together. By concentrating on specific cell types such as the Arabidopsis root hair or guard cell, the plasma membrane Ca2+ channels responding to extracellular ATP and ADP can be characterized (4,5). Using channel, G protein and NADPH oxidase mutants will allow the impact of signalling elements on cytosolic Ca2+, reactive oxygen species, transcripts and cellular response to be established.

  1. Plant Physiology 133, 456
  2. Plant Cell 17, 3019
  3. Trends in Cell Biology 20, 601
  4. Plant Journal 58, 903
  5. Plant Physiology 156,1375