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Open AccessArticle

The Role of Brachypodium distachyon Wall-Associated Kinases (WAKs) in Cell Expansion and Stress Responses

by 1,*,†, 2,3, 2,3,‡ and 1,2,*,‡
1
School of BioSciences, University of Melbourne, Parkville 3010, Victoria, Australia
2
La Trobe Institute for Agriculture and Food, La Trobe University, Bundoora 3086, Victoria, Australia
3
Sino-Australia Plant Cell Wall Research Centre, School of Forestry and Biotechnology, Zhejiang A&F University, Hangzhou 311300, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Current address: Mars Global Food Safety Center, Beijing 101407, China.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Cells 2020, 9(11), 2478; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9112478
Received: 17 September 2020 / Revised: 9 November 2020 / Accepted: 11 November 2020 / Published: 14 November 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Research on Plant Cell Wall Biology)
The plant cell wall plays a critical role in signaling responses to environmental and developmental cues, acting as both the sensing interface and regulator of plant cell integrity. Wall-associated kinases (WAKs) are plant receptor-like kinases located at the wall—plasma membrane—cytoplasmic interface and implicated in cell wall integrity sensing. WAKs in Arabidopsis thaliana have been shown to bind pectins in different forms under various conditions, such as oligogalacturonides (OG)s in stress response, and native pectin during cell expansion. The mechanism(s) WAKs use for sensing in grasses, which contain relatively low amounts of pectin, remains unclear. WAK genes from the model monocot plant, Brachypodium distachyon were identified. Expression profiling during early seedling development and in response to sodium salicylate and salt treatment was undertaken to identify WAKs involved in cell expansion and response to external stimuli. The BdWAK2 gene displayed increased expression during cell expansion and stress response, in addition to playing a potential role in the hypersensitive response. In vitro binding assays with various forms of commercial polysaccharides (pectins, xylans, and mixed-linkage glucans) and wall-extracted fractions (pectic/hemicellulosic/cellulosic) from both Arabidopsis and Brachypodium leaf tissues provided new insights into the binding properties of BdWAK2 and other candidate BdWAKs in grasses. The BdWAKs displayed a specificity for the acidic pectins with similar binding characteristics to the AtWAKs. View Full-Text
Keywords: abiotic stress; biotic stress; cell expansion; plant defense; signaling; wall-associated kinase abiotic stress; biotic stress; cell expansion; plant defense; signaling; wall-associated kinase
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MDPI and ACS Style

Wu, X.; Bacic, A.; Johnson, K.L.; Humphries, J. The Role of Brachypodium distachyon Wall-Associated Kinases (WAKs) in Cell Expansion and Stress Responses. Cells 2020, 9, 2478. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9112478

AMA Style

Wu X, Bacic A, Johnson KL, Humphries J. The Role of Brachypodium distachyon Wall-Associated Kinases (WAKs) in Cell Expansion and Stress Responses. Cells. 2020; 9(11):2478. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9112478

Chicago/Turabian Style

Wu, Xingwen; Bacic, Antony; Johnson, Kim L.; Humphries, John. 2020. "The Role of Brachypodium distachyon Wall-Associated Kinases (WAKs) in Cell Expansion and Stress Responses" Cells 9, no. 11: 2478. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9112478

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