Entries by Pavithran Narayanan

When fungi get ‘SCOOP’ed: MIK2 receptor kinase perceives SCOOP phytocytokines in Arabidopsis thaliana (Nature Comms)

Plant cells sense endogenous and exogenous molecules through proteins localized to the cell surface. While numerous ligands that mediate a variety of developmental and stress processes are known, cognate receptors for many ligands remain unidentified. Rhodes and colleagues have now shown the Arabidopsis thaliana leucine-rich receptor kinase MIK2 to be the receptor for the SCOOP […]

Cold translation: Ribosome-mediated translation inhibition senses cold stress in plants (bioRxiv)

A drop in ambient temperature adversely affects plant growth and development. While the primary molecular pathway in response to cold stress involves the expression of CBF transcription factors, Guillaume-Schöpfer and colleagues found cold stress-induced inhibition of ribosome translation machinery to control CBF expression. To start, the rate of protein synthesis was found to be proportional […]

A long shot: Photosynthesis-derived systemic signal controls lateral root emergence (Plant Physiol.)

Photosynthesis, in addition to generating ‘food’ for plants, is also known to control root growth, although the mechanism has been unknown. Duan and co-workers identified CYCLOPHILIN38 (CYP38) as necessary for photosynthesis-mediated lateral root (LR) emergence. The chloroplast-localized CYP38 is necessary for assembly of photosystem II, and its mutants show defects in LR emergence, linking it […]

A cell-surface receptor-like kinase mediates herbivore-sensing in legumes (Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA)

Inceptins are degraded fragments of host chloroplast ATP synthase subunit (cATPC) that are an important class of herbivore-associated molecular patterns (HAMPs). These peptides are abundant in herbivore oral secretions (OS). Using Vu-In, a conserved inceptin from cowpea, Steinbrenner and colleagues have identified a receptor-like kinase (RLK) that specifically senses inceptins in a subtribe of legumes. […]

Spiral down: Rice plants adopt helical root growth under ammonium stress (Plant J.)

While ammonium ions (NH4+) serve as important sources of nitrogen nutrition, higher concentrations are toxic and inhibit plant growth and development. In an attempt to understand how roots of rice plant adapt to high concentrations of NH4+, Jia and colleagues found the roots coil and adopt a helical growth pattern at their tips. Experiments indicated […]

CLE40 induces localized root Ca2+ transients through CNGC9 (bioRxiv)

CLE40 induces localized root Ca2+ transients through CNGC9 Growth and differentiation of cells in the meristematic region are tightly regulated by different signaling pathways. In the root meristem, the small peptide CLE40 acts as a ligand that binds to cell surface receptors and regulates cellular differentiation. In a new study, Breiden and colleagues have shown […]

CAMEL in the canal: Regulation of PIN proteins during canalization (Science)

Auxin transport during development or wound regeneration is known to require auxin-induced channel or ‘canal’ formation that includes polar localization of PIN auxin transport proteins. Hajný and colleagues have characterized a receptor-like kinase (RLK) complex involved in auxin-induced pattern formation as well as PIN localization. The authors identified CAMEL, a membrane-localized RLK, and its interactor, […]

Phosphorylation-dependent sub-functionalization of the calcium-dependent protein kinase CPK28 (bioRxiv)

Calcium-dependent protein kinases (CPKs) form an important class of sensor-responder proteins that bind Ca2+ to ‘sense’ intracellular Ca2+ levels, and ‘respond’ by phosphorylating target proteins. CPK28 has distinct roles in growth and defense. To analyze the importance of Ca2+ in fine-tuning CPK28 function, Bredow and colleagues identified a single phosphorylation site, serine (Ser) 318, as […]