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Publications - Molecular Signal Processing

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Books and chapters

Möller, B.; Bürstenbinder, K. Semi-Automatic Cell Segmentation from Noisy Image Data for Quantification of Microtubule Organization on Single Cell Level 199-203, (2019) ISBN: 978-1-5386-3640-4 DOI: 10.1109/ISBI.2019.8759145

The structure of the microtubule cytoskeleton provides valuable information related to morphogenesis of cells. The cytoskeleton organizes into diverse patterns that vary in cells of different types and tissues, but also within a single tissue. To assess differences in cytoskeleton organization methods are needed that quantify cytoskeleton patterns within a complete cell and which are suitable for large data sets. A major bottleneck in most approaches, however, is a lack of techniques for automatic extraction of cell contours. Here, we present a semi-automatic pipeline for cell segmentation and quantification of microtubule organization. Automatic methods are applied to extract major parts of the contours and a handy image editor is provided to manually add missing information efficiently. Experimental results prove that our approach yields high-quality contour data with minimal user intervention and serves a suitable basis for subsequent quantitative studies.
Books and chapters

Möller, B.; Zergiebel, L.; Bürstenbinder, K. Quantitative and Comparative Analysis of Global Patterns of (Microtubule) Cytoskeleton Organization with CytoskeletonAnalyzer2D (Cvrčková, F. & Žárský, V., eds.). Methods Mol Biol 1992, 151-171, (2019) ISBN: 978-1-4939-9469-4 DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4939-9469-4_10

The microtubule cytoskeleton plays important roles in cell morphogenesis. To investigate the mechanisms of cytoskeletal organization, for example, during growth or development, in genetic studies, or in response to environmental stimuli, image analysis tools for quantitative assessment are needed. Here, we present a method for texture measure-based quantification and comparative analysis of global microtubule cytoskeleton patterns and subsequent visualization of output data. In contrast to other approaches that focus on the extraction of individual cytoskeletal fibers and analysis of their orientation relative to the growth axis, CytoskeletonAnalyzer2D quantifies cytoskeletal organization based on the analysis of local binary patterns. CytoskeletonAnalyzer2D thus is particularly well suited to study cytoskeletal organization in cells where individual fibers are difficult to extract or which lack a clearly defined growth axis, such as leaf epidermal pavement cells. The tool is available as ImageJ plugin and can be combined with publicly available software and tools, such as R and Cytoscape, to visualize similarity networks of cytoskeletal patterns.
Books and chapters

Möller, B.; Poeschl, Y.; Klemm, S.; Bürstenbinder, K. Morphological Analysis of Leaf Epidermis Pavement Cells with PaCeQuant (Cvrčková, F. & Žárský, V., eds.). Methods Mol Biol 1992, 329-349, (2019) ISBN: 978-1-4939-9469-4 DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4939-9469-4_22

Morphological analysis of cell shapes requires segmentation of cell contours from input images and subsequent extraction of meaningful shape descriptors that provide the basis for qualitative and quantitative assessment of shape characteristics. Here, we describe the publicly available ImageJ plugin PaCeQuant and its associated R package PaCeQuantAna, which provides a pipeline for fully automatic segmentation, feature extraction, statistical analysis, and graphical visualization of cell shape properties. PaCeQuant is specifically well suited for analysis of jigsaw puzzle-like leaf epidermis pavement cells from 2D input images and supports the quantification of global, contour-based, skeleton-based, and pavement cell-specific shape descriptors.
Books and chapters

Tissier, A.; Ziegler, J.; Vogt, T. Specialized Plant Metabolites: Diversity and Biosynthesis (Krauss, G.-J. & Nies, D. H., eds.). 14-37, (2015) ISBN: 978-3-527-31650-2 DOI: 10.1002/9783527686063.ch2

Plant secondary metabolites, also termed specialized plant metabolites, currently comprise more than 200 000 natural products that are all based on a few biosynthetic pathways and key primary metabolites. Some pathways like flavonoid and terpenoid biosynthesis are universally distributed in the plant kingdom, whereas others like alkaloid or cyanogenic glycoside biosynthesis are restricted to a limited set of taxa. Diversification is achieved by an array of mechanisms at the genetic and enzymatic level including gene duplications, substrate promiscuity of enzymes, cell‐specific regulatory systems, together with modularity and combinatorial aspects. Specialized metabolites reflect adaptations to a specific environment. The observed diversity illustrates the heterogeneity and multitude of ecological habitats and niches that plants have colonized so far and constitutes a reservoir of potential new metabolites that may provide adaptive advantage in the face of environmental changes. The code that connects the observed chemical diversity to this ecological diversity is largely unknown. One way to apprehend this diversity is to realize its tremendous plasticity and evolutionary potential. This chapter presents an overview of the most widespread and popular secondary metabolites, which provide a definite advantage to adapt to or to colonize a particular environment, making the boundary between the “primary” and the “secondary” old fashioned and blurry.
Books and chapters

Carbonell, A.; Flores, R.; Gago, S. Hammerhead Ribozymes Against Virus and Viroid RNAs (Erdmann, V. A. & Barciszewski, J., eds.). RNA Technologies 411-427, (2012) ISBN: 978-3-642-27426-8 DOI: 10.1007/978-3-642-27426-8_16

The hammerhead ribozyme, a small catalytic motif that promotes self-cleavage of the RNAs in which it is found naturally embedded, can be manipulated to recognize and cleave specifically in trans other RNAs in the presence of Mg2+. To be really effective, hammerheads need to operate at the low concentration of Mg2+ existing in vivo. Evidence has been gathered along the last years showing that tertiary stabilizing motifs (TSMs), particularly interactions between peripheral loops, are critical for the catalytic activity of hammerheads at physiological levels of Mg2+. These TSMs, in two alternative formats, have been incorporated into a new generation of more efficient trans-cleaving hammerheads, some of which are active in vitro and in planta when targeted against the highly structured RNA of a viroid (a small plant pathogen). This strategy has potential to confer protection against other RNA replicons, like RNA viruses infecting plants and animals.
Books and chapters

Ziegler, J.; Hussain, H.; Neubert, R. H. H.; Abel, S. Sensitive and Selective Amino Acid Profiling of Minute Tissue Amounts by HPLC/Electrospray Negative Tandem Mass Spectrometry Using 9-Fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl (Fmoc-Cl) Derivatization (Alterman, M. A., ed.). Methods Mol Biol 2030, 365-379, (2019) ISBN: 978-1-4939-9639-1 DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4939-9639-1_27

A method for selective and sensitive quantification of amino acids is described. The combination of established derivatization procedures of secondary and primary amino groups with 9-fluorenylmethoxycarbonyl chloride (Fmoc-Cl) and subsequent detection of derivatized amino acids by LC-ESI-MS/MS using multiple reaction monitoring provides high selectivity. The attachment of an apolar moiety enables purification of derivatized amino acids from matrix by a single solid-phase extraction step, which increases sensitivity by reduced ion suppression during LC-ESI-MS/MS detection. Additionally, chromatography of all amino acids can be performed on reversed-phase HPLC columns using eluents without additives, which are known to cause significant decreases in signal to noise ratios. The method has been routinely applied for amino acid profiling of low amounts of liquids and tissues of various origins with a sample throughput of about 50–100 samples a day. In addition to a detailed description of the method, some representative examples are presented.
Books and chapters

Vaira, A. M.; Gago-Zachert, S.; Garcia, M. L.; Guerri, J.; Hammond, J.; Milne, R. G.; Moreno, P.; Morikawa, T.; Natsuaki, T.; Navarro, J. A.; Pallas, V.; Torok, V.; Verbeek, M.; Vetten, H. J. Family - Ophioviridae (King, A. M. Q., et al., eds.). 743-748, (2012) ISBN: 978-0-12-384684-6 DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-384684-6.00060-4

This chapter focuses on Ophioviridae family whose sole member genus is Ophiovirus. The member species of the genus include Citrus psorosis virus (CPsV), Freesia sneak virus(FreSV), Lettuce ring necrosis virus (LRNV), and Mirafiori lettuce big-vein virus (MiLBVV).The single stranded negative/possibly ambisense RNA genome is divided into 3–4 segments, each of which is encapsidated in a single coat protein (43–50 kDa) forming filamentous virions of about 3 nm in diameter, in shape of kinked or probably internally coiled circles of at least two different contour lengths. Ophioviruses can be mechanically transmitted to a limited range of test plants, inducing local lesions and systemic mottle. The natural hosts of CPsV, ranunculus white mottle virus (RWMV), MiLBVV, and LRNV are dicotyledonous plants of widely differing taxonomy. CPsV has a wide geographical distribution in citrus in the Americas, in the Mediterranean and in New Zealand. FreSV has been reported in two species of the family Ranunculacae from Northern Italy, and in lettuce in France and Germany. Tulip mild mottle mosaic virus (TMMMV) has been reported in tulips in Japan. LRNV is closely associated with lettuce ring necrosis disease in The Netherlands, Belgium, and France, and FreSV has been reported in Europe, Africa, North America and New Zealand.
Books and chapters

Yamaguchi, I.; Cohen, J. D.; Culler, A. H.; Quint, M.; Slovin, J. P.; Nakajima, M.; Yamaguchi, S.; Sakakibara, H.; Kuroha, T.; Hirai, N.; Yokota, T.; Ohta, H.; Kobayashi, Y.; Mori, H.; Sakagami, Y. Plant Hormones (Liu, H.-W. & Mander, L., eds.). Comprehensive Natural Products II 4, 9-125, (2010) ISBN: 978-0-08-045382-8 DOI: 10.1016/B978-008045382-8.00092-7

The definition of a plant hormone has not been clearly established, so the compounds classified as plant hormones often vary depending on which definition is considered. In this chapter, auxins, gibberellins (GAs), cytokinins, abscisic acid, brassinosteroids, jasmonic acid-related compounds, and ethylene are described as established plant hormones, while polyamines and phenolic compounds are not included. On the other hand, several peptides that have been proven to play a clear physiological role(s) in plant growth and development, similar to the established plant hormones, are referred. This chapter will focus primarily on the more recent discoveries of plant hormones and their impact on our current understanding of their biological role. In some cases, however, it is critical to place recent work in a proper historical context.
Books and chapters

Flores, R.; Gago-Zachert, S.; De la Peña, M.; Navarro, B. Chrysanthemum Chlorotic Mottle Viroid (Ed. A. Hadidi, et al.). 331-338, (2017) ISBN: eBook ISBN: 9780128017029; Hardcover ISBN: 9780128014981. DOI: 10.1016/B978-0-12-801498-1.00031-0

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Books and chapters

Wasternack, C. Jasmonates in plant growth and stress responses. (Tran, L.-S.; Pal, S.). Springer, 221-264, (2014) ISBN: 978-1-4939-0490-7 (hardcover) 978-1-4939-4814-7 (softcover) DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4939-0491-4_8

Abiotic and biotic stresses adversely affect plant growth and productivity. The phytohormones regulate key physiological events under normal and stressful conditions for plant development. Accumulative research efforts have discovered important roles of phytohormones and their interactions in regulation of plant adaptation to numerous stressors. Intensive molecular studies have elucidated various plant hormonal pathways; each of which consist of many signaling components that link a specific hormone perception to the regulation of downstream genes. Signal transduction pathways of auxin, abscisic acid, cytokinins, gibberellins and ethylene have been thoroughly investigated. More recently, emerging signaling pathways of brassinosteroids, jasmonates, salicylic acid and strigolactones offer an exciting gateway for understanding their multiple roles in plant physiological processes.At the molecular level, phytohormonal crosstalks can be antagonistic or synergistic or additive in actions. Additionally, the signal transduction component(s) of one hormonal pathway may interplay with the signaling component(s) of other hormonal pathway(s). Together these and other research findings have revolutionized the concept of phytohormonal studies in plants. Importantly, genetic engineering now enables plant biologists to manipulate the signaling pathways of plant hormones for development of crop varieties with improved yield and stress tolerance.This book, written by internationally recognized scholars from various countries, represents the state-of-the-art understanding of plant hormones’ biology, signal transduction and implications. Aimed at a wide range of readers, including researchers, students, teachers and many others who have interests in this flourishing research field, every section is concluded with biotechnological strategies to modulate hormone contents or signal transduction pathways and crosstalk that enable us to develop crops in a sustainable manner. Given the important physiological implications of plant hormones in stressful environments, our book is finalized with chapters on phytohormonal crosstalks under abiotic and biotic stresses. 
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