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Wasternack, C.; Feussner, I. The Oxylipin Pathways: Biochemistry and Function Annu Rev Plant Biol 69, 363-386, (2018) DOI: 10.1146/annurev-arplant-042817-040440

Plant oxylipins form a constantly growing group of signaling molecules that comprise oxygenated fatty acids and metabolites derived therefrom. In the last decade, the understanding of biosynthesis, metabolism, and action of oxylipins, especially jasmonates, has dramatically improved. Additional mechanistic insights into the action of enzymes and insights into signaling pathways have been deepened for jasmonates. For other oxylipins, such as the hydroxy fatty acids, individual signaling properties and cross talk between different oxylipins or even with additional phytohormones have recently been described. This review summarizes recent understanding of the biosynthesis, regulation, and function of oxylipins.

Quint, M.; Drost, H.-G.; Gabel, A.; Ullrich, K. K.; Bönn, M.; Grosse, I. A transcriptomic hourglass in plant embryogenesis Nature 490, 98-101, (2012) DOI: 10.1038/nature11394

Animal and plant development starts with a constituting phase called embryogenesis, which evolved independently in both lineages1. Comparative anatomy of vertebrate development—based on the Meckel-Serrès law2 and von Baer’s laws of embryology3 from the early nineteenth century—shows that embryos from various taxa appear different in early stages, converge to a similar form during mid-embryogenesis, and again diverge in later stages. This morphogenetic series is known as the embryonic ‘hourglass’4,5, and its bottleneck of high conservation in mid-embryogenesis is referred to as the phylotypic stage6. Recent analyses in zebrafish and Drosophila embryos provided convincing molecular support for the hourglass model, because during the phylotypic stage the transcriptome was dominated by ancient genes7 and global gene expression profiles were reported to be most conserved8. Although extensively explored in animals, an embryonic hourglass has not been reported in plants, which represent the second major kingdom in the tree of life that evolved embryogenesis. Here we provide phylotranscriptomic evidence for a molecular embryonic hourglass in Arabidopsis thaliana, using two complementary approaches. This is particularly significant because the possible absence of an hourglass based on morphological features in plants suggests that morphological and molecular patterns might be uncoupled. Together with the reported developmental hourglass patterns in animals, these findings indicate convergent evolution of the molecular hourglass and a conserved logic of embryogenesis across kingdoms.

Hause, B.; Kogel, K.-H.; Parthier, B.; Wasternack, C. In barley leaf cells, jasmonates do not act as a signal during compatible or incompatible interactions with the powdery mildew fungus (<i>Erysiphe graminis</i> f. sp. <i>hordei</i>) J. Plant Physiol. 150, 127-132, (1997) DOI: 10.1016/S0176-1617(97)80191-5

We have studied a possible function of jasmonates as mediators in the host-pathogen interaction of barley (Hordeum vulgare L.) with the powdery mildew fungus Egh (Erysiphe graminis f. sp. hordei). Previous findings from whole-leaf extracts demonstrated that (i) extracts from infected barley leaves did not contain enhanced levels of jasmonates, (ii) transcripts of jasmonate-inducible genes were not expressed upon infection, and (iii) exogenous application of jasmonates did not induce resistance to Egh (Kogel et al., 1995). Nevertheless, the question arises whether or not jasmonates are involved in the interaction of barley with the powdery mildew fungus at the local site of infection. Using an immunocytological approach the analysis of leaf cross-sections from a susceptible barley cultivar and its near-isogenic mlo5-resistant line revealed no accumulation of JIP-23, the most abundant jasmonate inducible protein, neither in epidermal cells attacked by the pathogen nor in adjacent mesophyll cells. As a positive control, cross-sections from methyl jasmonate-treated leaf segments showed a strong signal for JIP-23 accumulation. Because the presence of the jasmonate-inducible protein is highly indicative for an already low threshold level of endogenous jasmonate (Lehmann et al., 1995), the lack of JIP-23 accumulation at the sites of attempted fungal infection clearly demonstrates the absence of enhanced levels of jasmonates. This excludes even a local rise of jasmonate confined to those single cells penetrated (Mlo genotype) or attacked (mlo5 genotype) by the fungus.

Wasternack, C.; Atzorn, R.; Pena-Cortes, H.; Parthier, B. Alteration of gene expression by jasmonate and ABA in tobacco and tomato J. Plant Physiol. 147, 503-510, (1996)

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