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Regulation of Plant Cell Wall Metabolism by Cytokinins: Novel Developmental Mechanisms for Biomass Improvement

Department 58 – International Relations
Department 58 – International Relations


RegionNational coverage
Title of the ProgrammeCZ09 - Czech-Norwegian Research Programme
Title of the ProjectRegulation of Plant Cell Wall Metabolism by Cytokinins: Novel Developmental Mechanisms for Biomass Improvement
Project Website

Number of the Project7F14155
Project Promoter

Masaryk University

Name of Norwegian Partner(s)

Norwegian University of Science and Technology

Objective of the Project

Cell walls (CWs) represent one of the most prominent characteristics of plant cells causing cell immobility during development as well as providing the plant cell with an important barrier during defense against pathogen infection. During plant defense and development, cell wall damage (CWD) occurs which impairs functional integrity of the walls and survival of the plant cells. Recent experimental evidence highlights the critical importance of CW metabolism and mechanical CW properties in plant organogenesis. Plant hormones were shown to be potent regulators of CW composition. However, the mode of action of the molecular mechanisms mediating the hormonal control of CW metabolism is not well understood. Based on previously published data and our own unpublished preliminary results, we suggest a novel role for plant hormones cytokinins (CKs) in the regulation of CW metabolism, which has important consequences for vascular tissue development and CWD response. Here we intend to employ standard and leading-edge molecular biology, biochemical, molecular imaging and physiology techniques to achieve three main objectives: i) Determining molecular targets of CKs activity responsible for regulating tracheary elements (TEs) differentiation, the process that our unpublished data has shown to be CK-dependent and associated with changes in the CW lignification and TE hydraulic conductivity. ii) Describing the role of the Arabidopsis dirigent-like protein family (AtDIRs), members of which are supposed to be direct targets of CK signaling in the regulation of CW properties. iii) Finally, using a system to generate CWD in a controlled way (developed by us), specifying the functions of CKs and AtDIR proteins in the modification of cell cycle activity upon exposure to CWD.

Approved grant

22 889 000 CZK

Project DurationStart date: 8th July 2015, End date: 30th April 2017