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Plant Signal Behav. 2011 Apr;6(4):558-62. Epub 2011 Apr 1.

The K (+) battery-regulating Arabidopsis K (+) channel AKT2 is under the control of multiple post-translational steps.

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  • 1Institute of Biochemistry and Biology, University of Potsdam, Potsdam-Golm, Germany.

Abstract

Potassium (K (+) ) is an important nutrient for plants. It serves as a cofactor of various enzymes and as the major inorganic solute maintaining plant cell turgor. In a recent study, an as yet unknown role of K (+) in plant homeostasis was shown. It was demonstrated that K (+) gradients in vascular tissues can serve as an energy source for phloem (re)loading processes and that the voltage-gated K (+) channels of the AKT2-type play a unique role in this process. The AKT2 channel can be converted by phosphorylation of specific serine residues (S210 and S329) into a non-rectifying channel that allows a rapid efflux of K (+) from the sieve element/companion cells (SE/CC) complex. The energy of this flux is used by other transporters for phloem (re)loading processes. Nonetheless, the results do indicate that post-translational modifications at S210 and S329 alone cannot explain AKT2 regulation. Here, we discuss the existence of multiple post-translational modification steps that work in concert to convert AKT2 from an inward-rectifying into a non-rectifying K (+) channel.

PMID:
21445013
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3142392
Free PMC Article
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