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Trends Plant Sci. 2003 Jun;8(6):286-93.

CNGCs: prime targets of plant cyclic nucleotide signalling?

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Max-Planck-Institut für Molekulare Pflanzenphysiologie, Am Mühlenberg 1, D-14476 Golm, Germany.


Cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGCs) are a recently identified family of plant ion channels. They show a high degree of similarity to Shaker-type voltage-gated channels and contain a C-terminal cyclic nucleotide-binding domain with an overlapping calmodulin-binding domain. Heterologously expressed plant CNGCs show activation by cyclic nucleotides and permeability to monovalent and divalent cations. In plants, downstream effectors of cyclic nucleotide signals have so far remained obscure, and CNGCs might be their prime targets. The unique position of CNGCs as ligand-gated Ca(2+)-permeable channels suggests that they function at key sites where cyclic nucleotide and Ca(2+) signalling pathways interact. Such processes include plant defence responses, and two recently characterized Arabidopsis mutants in CNGC genes indeed show altered pathogen responses.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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