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Sci China C Life Sci. 2006 Feb;49(1):1-11.

Hydrogen peroxide homeostasis and signaling in plant cells.

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Laboratory of Plant Stress Biology, Department of Biology, Henan University, Kaifeng 475001, China.


The increases of H2O2 concentrations in plant cells often occur under biotic and abiotic stress conditions (e.g. light, environmental stresses and plant hormone abscisic acid). Atmospheric H202 as an ancient signal molecule not only plays the key role in inducing evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis, but also modulates many physiological events, such as stomatal movement, hypersensitive responses, programmed cell death and gene expressions. H2O2 levels in cells must sustain a fine equilibrium between production and scavenging. H2O2 enters cells from the apoplast or generated sources, and in turn is distributed in sub-cellular compartments. H202 can modulate the activities of many components in signaling, such as protein phosphatases, protein kinases, transcription factors (TFs), and calcium channels. Elevated cytosolic calcium concentrations will initiate further downstream responses, via the action of calcium-binding proteins. On the other hand, the research of H2O2 as a signal molecule is still in a comparatively juvenile stage, for example, little is known about how the cells sense H2O2, what the rate-limiting steps and most important cellular events are in cell signaling and what kind of genes is specific or necessary to H2O2 signaling. The answers to all the questions depend on the functional genomic and molecular genetics analysis.

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