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Guarding the Green: Pathways to Stomatal Immunity

June 2013 , Volume 26 , Number  6
Pages  626 - 632

Katja Sawinski,1 Sophia Mersmann,2 Silke Robatzek,2 and Maik Böhmer1

1Institut für Biologie und Biotechnologie der Pflanzen, Westfälische Wilhelms Universität, Schlossplatz 4, 48149 Münster, Germany; 2The Sainsbury Laboratory, Norwich Research Park, Norwich, NR4 7UH, U.K.

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Accepted 17 February 2013.

Guard cells regulate plant gas exchange and transpiration by modulation of stomatal aperture upon integrating external cues like photosynthetic effective illumination, CO2 levels and water availability and internal signals like abscisic acid (ABA). Being pores, stomata constitute a natural entry site for potentially harmful microbes. To prevent microbial invasion, stomata close upon perception of microbe-associated molecular patterns (MAMPs), and this represents an important layer of active immunity at the preinvasive level. The signaling pathways leading to stomatal closure triggered by biotic and abiotic stresses employ several common components, such as reactive oxygen species, calcium, kinases, and hormones, suggesting considerable intersection between MAMP- and ABA-induced stomatal closures, which we will discuss in this review.

© 2013 The American Phytopathological Society