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      Chloroplast signaling within, between and beyond cells

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          Abstract

          The most conspicuous function of plastids is the oxygenic photosynthesis of chloroplasts, yet plastids are super-factories that produce a plethora of compounds that are indispensable for proper plant physiology and development. Given their origins as free-living prokaryotes, it is not surprising that plastids possess their own genomes whose expression is essential to plastid function. This semi-autonomous character of plastids requires the existence of sophisticated regulatory mechanisms that provide reliable communication between them and other cellular compartments. Such intracellular signaling is necessary for coordinating whole-cell responses to constantly varying environmental cues and cellular metabolic needs. This is achieved by plastids acting as receivers and transmitters of specific signals that coordinate expression of the nuclear and plastid genomes according to particular needs. In this review we will consider the so-called retrograde signaling occurring between plastids and nuclei, and between plastids and other organelles. Another important role of the plastid we will discuss is the involvement of plastid signaling in biotic and abiotic stress that, in addition to influencing retrograde signaling, has direct effects on several cellular compartments including the cell wall. We will also review recent evidence pointing to an intriguing function of chloroplasts in regulating intercellular symplasmic transport. Finally, we consider an intriguing yet less widely known aspect of plant biology, chloroplast signaling from the perspective of the entire plant. Thus, accumulating evidence highlights that chloroplasts, with their complex signaling pathways, provide a mechanism for exquisite regulation of plant development, metabolism and responses to the environment. As chloroplast processes are targeted for engineering for improved productivity the effect of such modifications on chloroplast signaling will have to be carefully considered in order to avoid unintended consequences on plant growth and development.

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          Most cited references 287

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          Abscisic acid inhibits type 2C protein phosphatases via the PYR/PYL family of START proteins.

          Type 2C protein phosphatases (PP2Cs) are vitally involved in abscisic acid (ABA) signaling. Here, we show that a synthetic growth inhibitor called pyrabactin functions as a selective ABA agonist. Pyrabactin acts through PYRABACTIN RESISTANCE 1 (PYR1), the founding member of a family of START proteins called PYR/PYLs, which are necessary for both pyrabactin and ABA signaling in vivo. We show that ABA binds to PYR1, which in turn binds to and inhibits PP2Cs. We conclude that PYR/PYLs are ABA receptors functioning at the apex of a negative regulatory pathway that controls ABA signaling by inhibiting PP2Cs. Our results illustrate the power of the chemical genetic approach for sidestepping genetic redundancy.
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            Regulators of PP2C phosphatase activity function as abscisic acid sensors.

            The plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA) acts as a developmental signal and as an integrator of environmental cues such as drought and cold. Key players in ABA signal transduction include the type 2C protein phosphatases (PP2Cs) ABI1 and ABI2, which act by negatively regulating ABA responses. In this study, we identify interactors of ABI1 and ABI2 which we have named regulatory components of ABA receptor (RCARs). In Arabidopsis, RCARs belong to a family with 14 members that share structural similarity with class 10 pathogen-related proteins. RCAR1 was shown to bind ABA, to mediate ABA-dependent inactivation of ABI1 or ABI2 in vitro, and to antagonize PP2C action in planta. Other RCARs also mediated ABA-dependent regulation of ABI1 and ABI2, consistent with a combinatorial assembly of receptor complexes.
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              Isochorismate synthase is required to synthesize salicylic acid for plant defence.

              Salicylic acid (SA) mediates plant defences against pathogens, accumulating in both infected and distal leaves in response to pathogen attack. Pathogenesis-related gene expression and the synthesis of defensive compounds associated with both local and systemic acquired resistance (LAR and SAR) in plants require SA. In Arabidopsis, exogenous application of SA suffices to establish SAR, resulting in enhanced resistance to a variety of pathogens. However, despite its importance in plant defence against pathogens, SA biosynthesis is not well defined. Previous work has suggested that plants synthesize SA from phenylalanine; however, SA could still be produced when this pathway was inhibited, and the specific activity of radiolabelled SA in feeding experiments was often lower than expected. Some bacteria such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa synthesize SA using isochorismate synthase (ICS) and pyruvate lyase. Here we show, by cloning and characterizing an Arabidopsis defence-related gene (SID2) defined by mutation, that SA is synthesized from chorismate by means of ICS, and that SA made by this pathway is required for LAR and SAR responses.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Journal
                Front Plant Sci
                Front Plant Sci
                Front. Plant Sci.
                Frontiers in Plant Science
                Frontiers Media S.A.
                1664-462X
                06 October 2015
                2015
                : 6
                Affiliations
                Department of Biochemistry, Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Tennessee, Knoxville TN, USA
                Author notes

                Edited by: Steven James Burgess, University of Cambridge, UK

                Reviewed by: Taras P. Pasternak, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg, Germany; Thomas Pfannschmidt, Joseph Fourier University, France

                *Correspondence: Tessa M. Burch-Smith, Department of Biochemistry, Cellular and Molecular Biology, University of Tennessee, 1414 Cumberland Avenue, M407 Walters Life Science, Knoxville, TN 37932, USA, tburchsm@ 123456utk.edu

                This article was submitted to Plant Biotechnology, a section of the journal Frontiers in Plant Science

                Article
                10.3389/fpls.2015.00781
                4593955
                Copyright © 2015 Bobik and Burch-Smith.

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

                Page count
                Figures: 5, Tables: 1, Equations: 0, References: 332, Pages: 26, Words: 0
                Funding
                Funded by: National Science Foundation 10.13039/100000001
                Award ID: 1456761
                Categories
                Plant Science
                Review

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