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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2011 Dec;14(6):642-9. doi: 10.1016/j.pbi.2011.08.003. Epub 2011 Sep 6.

An update on plant membrane rafts.

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UMR Plante-Microbe-Environnement 1088, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique-5184, CNRS-Université de Bourgogne, 21065 Dijon Cedex, France.


The dynamic segregation of membrane components within microdomains, such as the sterol-enriched and sphingolipid-enriched membrane rafts, emerges as a central regulatory mechanism governing physiological responses in various organisms. Over the past five years, plasma membrane located raft-like domains have been described in several plant species. The protein and lipid compositions of detergent-insoluble membranes, supposed to contain these domains, have been extensively characterised. Imaging methods have shown that lateral segregation of lipids and proteins exists at the nanoscale level at the plant plasma membrane, correlating detergent insolubility and membrane-domain localisation of presumptive raft proteins. Finally, the dynamic association of specific proteins with detergent-insoluble membranes upon environmental stress has been reported, confirming a possible role for plant rafts as signal transduction platforms, particularly during biotic interactions.

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