Novel insights into the transfer routes of the essential copper cofactor to the ethylene plant hormone receptor family

Published on January 27th, 2020

Authors: Claudia Hoppen and Gerg Growth
Plant Signaling & Behavior2020, 15, 1716512. DOI: 10.1080/15592324.2020.1716512



The plant hormone ethylene is a key regulator of growth, development and stress adaptation at all stages of the plant life cycle. Signal perception and response to the plant hormone are mediated by a family of receptor kinases localized at the ER-Golgi network which gain their high affinity and specificity for the chemically simple ethylene molecule by an essential copper cofactor bound at their transmembrane domain. Transfer of this cofactor from the plant plasma membrane to the ER-localized receptors requires secured cellular transport of the reactive transition metal.

In a recent study, Hoppen and Growth disclosed the transport proteins involved in the copper transfer to the receptors and identified that cytoplasmic chaperones of the ATX1-family and a membrane-bound P-type ATPase are involved in copper routing. Strictly speaking, their data show that receptors can acquire their copper load by different routes and adopt the metal ion from the plasma membrane either by sequential transfer from soluble chaperones of the ATX1-family via the ER-bound copper-transporting ATPase RAN1 or by direct transfer from the soluble chaperones.

Here, they have studied the properties of the soluble plant copper chaperone isoforms, ATX1 and CCH, in more detail. They data support different cellular functions of these isoforms on copper mobilization.

Instrument: Fluidity One
Therapeutic area: protein oligomerization, metal binding

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