31 May 2013

Plant Immunity: From the Cell Surface to Signalling

Organised by:

SCI's Biotechnology Group in conjunction with the University of Westminster

University of Westminster

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All plant organs are vulnerable to colonisation and molecular manipulation by microbes. In an attempt to understand the full nature of the interactions that occur between a potential pathogen and its host, this talk will focus on membrane biology in plant-microbe interactions . Immune receptors constitute recognition sites to detect invading pathogens and to trigger defences, and the activity of these receptors depends upon the dynamic membrane trafficking network. 
The plasma membrane receptor FLAGELLIN SENSING 2 (FLS2) confers plant immunity through perception of bacterial flagelin (flg22). Following elicitation, FLS2 is internalised into vesicles. To resolve FLS2 trafficking, high-throughput confocal imaging for co-localisation studies and chemical interference was exploited. FLS2 localises to bona-find endosomes via distinct endocytic trafficking routes depending on its activation status.

Dr Robatzek will present the Sainsbury Laboratory’s high-throughput confocal imaging pipeline to study endosomal pathways in plants and will discuss results from their current research, which addresses the molecular components regulating FLS2 endocytosis, and the intersection between FLS2 endocytosis and fig22 signalling. Robatzek will further describe recent results demonstrating that ligand-induced internalisation of FLS2 represents a conserved common endocytic trafficking pathway.

To advance their research, the Sainsbury Laboratory developed a range of computational tools to extract meaningful data from bioimages and large image data sets, which Robatzek will briefly discuss for the detection of stomata closure and callose deposition in response to flg22. Altogether, high-throughput confocal imaging combined with functional studies allows us to tackle the dynamic cellular changes involved in the interaction between plants and microbes.

Research into S.R.’s laboratory is supported by the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and by a grant of the European Research Council (ERC).

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University of Westminster

University of Westminster, School of Life Sciences, 115 New Cavendish Street London W1W 6UW

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Additional Info


Dr Silke Robatzek
The Sainsbury Laboratory