ESCRTing in cereals: still a long way to go
The multivesicular body (MVB) sorting pathway provides a mechanism for the delivery of cargo destined for degradation to the vacuole or lysosome. The endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) is essential for the MVB sorting pathway by driving the cargo sorting to its destination. Many efforts in plant research have identified the ESCRT machinery and functionally characterised the first plant ESCRT proteins. However, most studies have been performed in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana that is genetically and physiologically different to crops. Cereal crops are important for animal feed and human nutrition and have further been utilized as promising candidates for recombinant protein production. In this review, I summarize the role of plant ESCRT components in cereals that are involved in efficient adaptation to environmental stress and grain development. A special focus is on barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) ESCRT proteins, where recent studies show their quantitative mapping during grain development, e.g. associating HvSNF7.1 with protein trafficking to protein bodies (PBs) in starchy endosperm. Thus, it is indispensable to identify the molecular key-players within the endomembrane system including ESCRT proteins to optimize and possibly enhance tolerance to environmental stress, grain yield and recombinant protein production in cereal grains.
KeywordsESCRT cereal barley grain endosperm SNF7 abiotic stress biotic stress
This work was financially supported by the Austrian Science Fund FWF (P29454-B22, P29303-B22). I thank Dr. Alois Schweighofer for critical reading of the manuscript.
Compliance and ethics The author declares that she has no conflict of interest.
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