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J Proteome Res. 2012 Jan 1;11(1):438-48. doi: 10.1021/pr200893k. Epub 2011 Dec 1.

Targeted quantitative phosphoproteomics approach for the detection of phospho-tyrosine signaling in plants.

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Molecular Genetics, Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Utrecht University, Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Tyrosine (Tyr) phosphorylation plays an essential role in signaling in animal systems. However, a few studies have also reported Tyr phosphorylation in plants, but the relative contribution of tyrosine phosphorylation to plant signal transduction has remained an open question. We present an approach to selectively measure and quantify Tyr phosphorylation in plant cells, which can also be applied to whole plants. We combined a (15)N stable isotope metabolic labeling strategy with an immuno-affinity purification using phospho-tyrosine (pY) specific antibodies. This single enrichment strategy was sufficient to reproducibly identify and quantify pY containing peptides from total plant cell extract in a single LC-MS/MS run. We succeeded in identifying 149 unique pY peptides originating from 135 proteins, including a large set of different protein kinases and several receptor-like kinases. We used flagellin perception by Arabidopsis cells, a model system for pathogen triggered immune (PTI) signaling, to test our approach. We reproducibly quantified 23 pY peptides in 2 inversely labeled biological replicates identifying 11 differentially phosphorylated proteins. These include a set of 3 well-characterized flagellin responsive MAP kinases and 4 novel MAP kinases. With this targeted approach, we elucidate a new level of complexity in flagellin-induced MAP kinase activation.

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