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Trends Plant Sci. 2009 Sep;14(9):479-87. doi: 10.1016/j.tplants.2009.07.004. Epub 2009 Aug 28.

Heaven's Gate: nuclear accessibility and activities of plant immune regulators.

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Department of Plant Microbe Interactions, Max-Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research, D-50829 Köln, Germany.


Proper deciphering of abiotic and biotic stresses is essential for plant survival and requires plasticity in response pathway activation. Environmental stress signals are ultimately integrated and transcriptional programs defined inside the nucleus. In animal and plant immunity, various mechanisms help to constrain the activities of transcriptional regulators and transcription factors until an appropriate stimulus releases them from inactive complexes in the cytoplasm, nucleoplasm or at the chromatin to modulate gene expression. Controlling the transport of macromolecules to and from the nucleus and dynamic rearrangements of chromatin-associated transcription complexes emerge as key regulatory processes, permitting flexibility of the plant response to a fluctuating environment with varying pathogen pressure.

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