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Trends Plant Sci. 2003 Nov;8(11):526-33.

Ultraviolet-B radiation co-opts defense signaling pathways.

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  • 1University of South Carolina, Department of Biological Sciences, Coker Life Science Building, Columbia, SC 29208, USA.


Plants in the field exposed to ambient solar ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation (280-320 nm) often show an increased resistance to herbivorous insects compared with control plants grown under filters that exclude the UV-B component of solar radiation. This corresponds with a significant overlap in gene expression between the UV-B and the wounding/herbivory response. Furthermore, wound-responsive signaling components such as mitogen-activated protein kinases are activated by UV-B. A mechanistic explanation for these overlaps might be that UV-B co-opts cell surface receptors for defense signals such as systemin and oligosaccharide elicitors in a ligand-independent manner.

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