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Wasternack, C.; Termination in Jasmonate Signaling by MYC2 and MTBs Trends Plant Sci. 24, 667-669, (2019) DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2019.06.001

Jasmonic acid (JA) signaling can be switched off by metabolism of JA. The master regulator MYC2, interacting with MED25, has been shown to be deactivated by the bHLH transcription factors MTB1, MTB2, and MTB3. An autoregulatory negative feedback loop has been proposed for this termination in JA signaling.

Wasternack, C.; New Light on Local and Systemic Wound Signaling Trends Plant Sci. 24, 102-105, (2019) DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2018.11.009

Electric signaling and Ca2+ waves were discussed to occur in systemic wound responses. Two new overlapping scenarios were identified: (i) membrane depolarization in two special cell types followed by an increase in systemic cytoplasmic Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]cyt), and (ii) glutamate sensed by GLUTAMATE RECEPTOR LIKE proteins and followed by Ca2+-based defense in distal leaves.

Wasternack, C.; Hause, B.; A Bypass in Jasmonate Biosynthesis – the OPR3-independent Formation Trends Plant Sci. 23, 276-279, (2018) DOI: 10.1016/j.tplants.2018.02.011

For the first time in 25 years, a new pathway for biosynthesis of jasmonic acid (JA) has been identified. JA production takes place via 12-oxo-phytodienoic acid (OPDA) including reduction by OPDA reductases (OPRs). A loss-of-function allele, opr3-3, revealed an OPR3-independent pathway converting OPDA to JA.

Wasternack, C.; Kombrink, E.; Jasmonates: Structural Requirements for Lipid-Derived Signals Active in Plant Stress Responses and Development ACS Chem. Biol. 5, 63-77, (2010) DOI: 10.1021/cb900269u

Jasmonates are lipid-derived signals that mediate plant stress responses and development processes. Enzymes participating in biosynthesis of jasmonic acid (JA) (1, 2) and components of JA signaling have been extensively characterized by biochemical and molecular-genetic tools. Mutants of Arabidopsis and tomato have helped to define the pathway for synthesis of jasmonoyl-isoleucine (JA-Ile), the active form of JA, and to identify the F-box protein COI1 as central regulatory unit. However, details of the molecular mechanism of JA signaling have only recently been unraveled by the discovery of JAZ proteins that function in transcriptional repression. The emerging picture of JA perception and signaling cascade implies the SCFCOI1 complex operating as E3 ubiquitin ligase that upon binding of JA-Ile targets JAZ repressors for degradation by the 26S-proteasome pathway, thereby allowing the transcription factor MYC2 to activate gene expression. The fact that only one particular stereoisomer, (+)-7-iso-JA-l-Ile (4), shows high biological activity suggests that epimerization between active and inactive diastereomers could be a mechanism for turning JA signaling on or off. The recent demonstration that COI1 directly binds (+)-7-iso-JA-l-Ile (4) and thus functions as JA receptor revealed that formation of the ternary complex COI1-JA-Ile-JAZ is an ordered process. The pronounced differences in biological activity of JA stereoisomers also imply strict stereospecific control of product formation along the JA biosynthetic pathway. The pathway of JA biosynthesis has been unraveled, and most of the participating enzymes are well-characterized. For key enzymes of JA biosynthesis the crystal structures have been established, allowing insight into the mechanisms of catalysis and modes of substrate binding that lead to formation of stereospecific products.

Guranowski, A.; Miersch, O.; Staswick, P. E.; Suza, W.; Wasternack, C.; Substrate specificity and products of side-reactions catalyzed by jasmonate:amino acid synthetase (JAR1) FEBS Lett. 581, 815-820, (2007) DOI: 10.1016/j.febslet.2007.01.049

Jasmonate:amino acid synthetase (JAR1) is involved in the function of jasmonic acid (JA) as a plant hormone. It catalyzes the synthesis of several JA‐amido conjugates, the most important of which appears to be JA‐Ile. Structurally, JAR1 is a member of the firefly luciferase superfamily that comprises enzymes that adenylate various organic acids. This study analyzed the substrate specificity of recombinant JAR1 and determined whether it catalyzes the synthesis of mono‐ and dinucleoside polyphosphates, which are side‐reaction products of many enzymes forming acyl ∼ adenylates. Among different oxylipins tested as mixed stereoisomers for substrate activity with JAR1, the highest rate of conversion to Ile‐conjugates was observed for (±)‐JA and 9,10‐dihydro‐JA, while the rate of conjugation with 12‐hydroxy‐JA and OPC‐4 (3‐oxo‐2‐(2Z ‐pentenyl)cyclopentane‐1‐butyric acid) was only about 1–2% that for (±)‐JA. Of the two stereoisomers of JA, (−)‐JA and (+)‐JA, rate of synthesis of the former was about 100‐fold faster than for (+)‐JA. Finally, we have demonstrated that (1) in the presence of ATP, Mg2+, (−)‐JA and tripolyphosphate the ligase produces adenosine 5′‐tetraphosphate (p4A); (2) addition of isoleucine to that mixture halts the p4A synthesis; (3) the enzyme produces neither diadenosine triphosphate (Ap3A) nor diadenosine tetraphosphate (Ap4A) and (4) Ap4A cannot substitute ATP as a source of adenylate in the complete reaction that yields JA‐Ile.

Schüler, G.; Mithöfer, A.; Baldwin, I. T.; BERGER, S.; Ebel, J.; Santos, J. G.; Herrmann, G.; Hölscher, D.; Kramell, R.; Kutchan, T. M.; Maucher, H.; Schneider, B.; Stenzel, I.; Wasternack, C.; Boland, W.; Coronalon: a powerful tool in plant stress physiology FEBS Lett. 563, 17-22, (2004) DOI: 10.1016/S0014-5793(04)00239-X

Coronalon, a synthetic 6‐ethyl indanoyl isoleucine conjugate, has been designed as a highly active mimic of octadecanoid phytohormones that are involved in insect and disease resistance. The spectrum of biological activities that is affected by coronalon was investigated in nine different plant systems specifically responding to jasmonates and/or 12‐oxo‐phytodienoic acid. In all bioassays analyzed, coronalon demonstrated a general strong activity at low micromolar concentrations. The results obtained showed the induction of (i) defense‐related secondary metabolite accumulation in both cell cultures and plant tissues, (ii) specific abiotic and biotic stress‐related gene expression, and (iii) root growth retardation. The general activity of coronalon in the induction of plant stress responses together with its simple and efficient synthesis suggests that this compound might serve as a valuable tool in the examination of various aspects in plant stress physiology. Moreover, coronalon might become employed in agriculture to elicit plant resistance against various aggressors.

Feussner, I.; Kühn, H.; Wasternack, C.; Lipoxygenase-dependent degradation of storage lipids Trends Plant Sci. 6, 268-273, (2001) DOI: 10.1016/S1360-1385(01)01950-1

Oilseed germination is characterized by the mobilization of storage lipids as a carbon source for the germinating seedling. In spite of the importance of lipid mobilization, its mechanism is only partially understood. Recent data suggest that a novel degradation mechanism is initiated by a 13-lipoxygenase during germination, using esterified fatty acids specifically as substrates. This 13-lipoxygenase reaction leads to a transient accumulation of ester lipid hydroperoxides in the storage lipids, and the corresponding oxygenated fatty acid moieties are preferentially removed by specific lipases. The free hydroperoxy fatty acids are subsequently reduced to their hydroxy derivatives, which might in turn undergo β-oxidation.

Weichert, H.; Kohlmann, M.; Wasternack, C.; Feussner, I.; Metabolic profiling of oxylipins upon sorbitol treatment in barley leaves Biochem. Soc. Trans. 28, 861-862, (2001) DOI: 10.1042/bst0280861

In barley leaves 13-lipoxygenases (LOXs) are induced by salicylate and jasmonate. Here, we analyse by metabolic profiling the accumulation of oxylipins upon sorbitol treatment. Although 13-LOX-derived products are formed and specifically directed into the reductase branch of the LOX pathway, accumulation is much later than in the cases of salicylate and jasmonate treatment. In addition, under these conditions only the accumulation of jasmonates as additional products of the LOX pathway has been found.

Weichert, H.; Kolbe, A.; Wasternack, C.; Feussner, I.; Formation of 4-hydroxy-2-alkenals in barley leaves Biochem. Soc. Trans. 28, 850-851, (2000) DOI: 10.1042/bst0280850

In barley leaves 13-lipoxygenases are induced by jasmonates. This leads to induction of lipid peroxidation. Here we show by in vitro studies that these processes may further lead to autoxidative formation of (2E)-4-hydroxy-2-hexenal from (3Z)-hexenal.

Churin, J.; Hause, B.; Feussner, I.; Maucher, H. P.; Feussner, K.; Börner, T.; Wasternack, C.; Cloning and expression of a new cDNA from monocotyledonous plants coding for a diadenosine 5′,5′′′-P1,P4-tetraphosphate hydrolase from barley (Hordeum vulgare) FEBS Lett. 431, 481-485, (1998) DOI: 10.1016/S0014-5793(98)00819-9

From a cDNA library generated from mRNA of white leaf tissues of the ribosome‐deficient mutant ‘albostrians' of barley (Hordeum vulgare cv. Haisa) a cDNA was isolated carrying 54.2% identity to a recently published cDNA which codes for the diadenosine‐5′,5′′′‐P1,P4‐tetraphosphate (Ap4A) hydrolase of Lupinus angustifolius (Maksel et al. (1998) Biochem. J. 329, 313–319), and 69% identity to four partial peptide sequences of Ap4A hydrolase of tomato. Overexpression in Escherichia coli revealed a protein of about 19 kDa, which exhibited Ap4A hydrolase activity and cross‐reactivity with an antibody raised against a purified tomato Ap4A hydrolase (Feussner et al. (1996) Z. Naturforsch. 51c, 477–486). Expression studies showed an mRNA accumulation in all organs of a barley seedling. Possible functions of Ap4A hydrolase in plants will be discussed.
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