by University of Tübingen
Like animals, plants need to be on a constant lookout to recognize and respond to invasion by microbes. Plant immunity consists of two branches—the initial defense begins with the detection of invaders by receptors at the cell surface, while a second alarm pathway is triggered by receptors within the cell.
Recently, evidence has been mounting that these branches of the plant immune system, previously thought to be separate, may be connected. Now an international research team headed by Professor Thorsten Nürnberger of the Center for Plant Molecular Biology at the University of Tübingen and by Professor Jane Parker of the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research in Cologne has found evidence for the link. The team has discovered components that are involved in the signaling pathways of both branches.