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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: MOLECULAR TOOLS TO MINIMIZE RISK IN GENETICALLY ENGINEERED CROPS

Location: Crop Improvement & Utilization Research

Title: Plant defensins: Defense, development and application

Authors
item Stotz, Henrik -
item Thomson, James
item Yueju, Wang -

Submitted to: Plant Signaling and Behavior
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: November 1, 2009
Publication Date: November 1, 2009
Citation: Stotz, H., Thomson, J.G., Yueju, W. 2009. Plant defensins: Defense, development and application. Plant Signaling and Behavior.4(11):1010-1012.

Interpretive Summary: Plant defensins are small peptide proteins with antifungal and antimicrobial properties. This paper reviews current literature and briefly describes what is known what has been attempted in the understanding and use of these molecules.

Technical Abstract: Plant defensins are small, highly stable, cysteine-rich peptides that constitute a part of the innate immune system primarily directed against fungal pathogens. Biological activities reported for plant defensins include antifungal activity, antibacterial activity, proteinase inhibitory activity, and insect amylase inhibitory activity. Plant defensins have been shown to inhibit infectious diseases of humans and to induce apoptosis in a human pathogen. Transgenic plants overexpressing defensins are strongly resistant to fungal pathogens. Based on recent studies, some plant defensins are not merely toxic to microbes but also have roles in regulating plant growth and development.

Last Modified: 8/30/2014
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