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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2014 Jun;19:43-50. doi: 10.1016/j.pbi.2014.03.010. Epub 2014 Apr 13.

A look inside an alkaloid multisite plant: the Catharanthus logistics.

Author information

1
Université François-Rabelais de Tours, EA2106 'Biomolécules et Biotechnologies Végétales', Tours, France. Electronic address: vincent.courdavault@univ-tours.fr.
2
Université François-Rabelais de Tours, EA2106 'Biomolécules et Biotechnologies Végétales', Tours, France.
3
Université de Toulouse, UPS, UMR 5546, Laboratoire de Recherche en Sciences Végétales, BP 42617, Auzeville, F-31326 Castanet-Tolosan, France; CNRS, UMR 5546, BP 42617, Auzeville, F-31326 Castanet-Tolosan, France.

Abstract

Environmental pressures forced plants to diversify specialized metabolisms to accumulate noxious molecules such as alkaloids constituting one of the largest classes of defense metabolites. Catharanthus roseus produces monoterpene indole alkaloids via a highly elaborated biosynthetic pathway whose characterization greatly progressed with the recent expansion of transcriptomic resources. The complex architecture of this pathway, sequentially distributed in at least four cell types and further compartmentalized into several organelles, involves partially identified inter-cellular and intra-cellular translocation events acting as potential key-regulators of metabolic fluxes. The description of this spatial organization and the inherent secretion and sequestration of metabolites not only provide new insight into alkaloid cell biology and its involvement in plant defense processes but also present new biotechnological challenges for synthetic biology.

PMID:
24727073
DOI:
10.1016/j.pbi.2014.03.010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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