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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2006 Jun;9(3):234-40. Epub 2006 Apr 17.

Recent advances in the study of Clp, FtsH and other proteases located in chloroplasts.

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Institute of Plant Sciences and Genetics, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot 76100, Israel.


Several chloroplast proteases have been characterized in recent years. The ATP-dependent chloroplast proteases Clp and FtsH stand out because they form multi-subunit complexes consisting of different gene products. Surprisingly, both green and non-green plastids appear to contain a similar soluble Clp core proteolytic complex, consisting of five ClpP proteases, their non-catalytic ClpR homologs, and two ClpS homologs that have unknown function. Analyses of single and double FtsH1, FtsH2, FtsH5 and FtsH8 mutants, and overexpression of FtsH proteins in these Arabidopsis thaliana mutants show partial redundancies within pairs of closely related FtsH thylakoid proteins. The presence of at least one member of each pair is essential for functional accumulation. Other chloroplast proteases have also been identified recently. Future challenges include the identification of substrate recognition mechanisms and elucidating the role of proteases in chloroplast biogenesis and function.

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