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J Exp Bot. 2011 Jan;62(3):883-93. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erq331. Epub 2010 Oct 25.

The sucrose non-fermenting-1-related (SnRK) family of protein kinases: potential for manipulation to improve stress tolerance and increase yield.

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Departamento de Bioquímica, Facultad de Química, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Distrito Federal 04510, Mexico.


Sucrose non-fermenting-1 (SNF1)-related protein kinases (SnRKs) take their name from their fungal homologue, SNF1, a global regulator of carbon metabolism. The plant family has burgeoned to comprise 38 members which can be subdivided into three sub-families: SnRK1, SnRK2, and SnRK3. There is now good evidence that this has occurred to allow plants to link metabolic and stress signalling in a way that does not occur in other organisms. The role of SnRKs, focusing in particular on abscisic acid-induced signalling pathways, salinity tolerance, responses to nutritional stress and disease, and the regulation of carbon metabolism and, therefore, yield, is reviewed here. The key role that SnRKs play at the interface between metabolic and stress signalling make them potential candidates for manipulation to improve crop performance in extreme environments.

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