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PLANT PLASMA MEMBRANE H+-ATPases: Powerhouses for Nutrient Uptake.

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Department of Plant Biology, The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University, Thorvaldsensvej 40, Frederiksberg C, DK-1871 Denmark; e-mail:


Most transport proteins in plant cells are energized by electrochemical gradients of protons across the plasma membrane. The formation of these gradients is due to the action of plasma membrane H+ pumps fuelled by ATP. The plasma membrane H+-ATPases share a membrane topography and general mechanism of action with other P-type ATPases, but differ in regulatory properties. Recent advances in the field include the identification of the complete H+-ATPase gene family in Arabidopsis, analysis of H+-ATPase function by the methods of reverse genetics, an improved understanding of the posttranslational regulation of pump activity by 14-3-3 proteins, novel insights into the H+ transport mechanism, and progress in structural biology. Furthermore, the elucidation of the three-dimensional structure of a related Ca2+ pump has implications for understanding of structure-function relationships for the plant plasma membrane H+-ATPase.

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