, Volume 250, Issue 1, pp 391–393 | Cite as

Commentary on Grandellis et al. 2019: suggesting endogenous DNA as further player in the plant immune response to DOTAP

  • Martin HeilEmail author
Short Communication

Successful immunity requires the perception of exogenous and endogenous factors that indicate threats for homeostasis. Over the past years, it has become evident that plants, fungi and mammals share multiple elements of their innate immune system, including the perception of ‘damage-associated molecular patterns’ (DAMPs): endogenous molecules that have an ‘all-day job’ in the intact cell but serve as danger signals when present—as entire molecules or as fragments—in aberrant compartments (Heil and Land 2014). Examples of well-studied mammalian DAMPs that play the same role in plants or fungi include small signalling peptides (Pearce et al. 2010; Hander et al. 2019), extracellular ATP (Choi et al. 2014; Castellanos et al. 2018), and the high-mobility group box protein 3 (Choi et al. 2016). Even cancer drugs can trigger plant immune responses (Hadwiger and Tanaka 2018).

The most recent milestone in this development comes from the recent publication by Grandellis et al. (2019). In the...


Damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) Extracellular DNA DNA transfection Induced resistance Plant innate immunity 



Extracellular DNA


Damage-associated molecular pattern




Pattern recognition receptor



I thank Professor Dr. Dorothea Bartels for inviting this commentary, two anonymous referees for very helpful comments and Dr. Caroline Woods for correcting an earlier version of this manuscript. The research of MH is supported by CONACYT Grant 278283.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Departmento de Ingeniería GenéticaCentro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados (CINVESTAV) Unidad IrapuatoIrapuatoMexico

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