Biogenesis of vacuoles

A large central vacuole often takes more than 90% of the total volume of a plant cell. Its internal pressure contributes to the rigidity of non-woody tissues. An increase of this turgor pressure combined with a weakening of the cell wall allows the cells and tissues to grow.

Plant cells can actually have (at least) two types of vacuoles, a lytic and a neutral (storage) vacuoles which have multiple functions. They can play the lytic role of a lysosome (in animals), i.e. a digestive compartment .They can also serve to store reserves (sugars, organic acids, salts), pigments (flowers, fruits), toxic compounds (as defense against herbivores), etc. Fruit juices are essentialy vacuole saps.

We dissect the mechanisms of the biogenesis of the two types of vacuoles, that can be found in leaves, stems and roots.

We concentrate currently on the moss Physcomitrella patens as a model system which allows targeted gene knock-outs or replacements.

Collaborators on this project

Dr Didier Schaefer, Alessandro Occhialini*, Egidio Stigliano*, Pr. Jean-Marc Neuhaus, Didier Languetin

Maica Corciulo, Sana Ayachi, Sonia Negro, Tsilla Sunier

* Alessandro and Egidio just finished their PhD theses

Recent publications

Paris, N., Saint-Jean, B., Faraco, M., Krzeszowiec, W., Dalessandro, G., Neuhaus, J.-M., and Di Sansebastiano, G.P. (2010). Expression of a glycosylated GFP as a bivalent reporter in exocytosis. Plant Cell Rep 29, 79-86

Saint-Jean, B., Seveno-Carpentier, E., Alcon, C., Neuhaus, J.-M., and Paris, N. (2010). The Cytosolic Tail Dipeptide Ile-Met of the Pea Receptor BP80 Is Required for Recycling from the Prevacuole and for Endocytosis. Plant Cell 22, 2825-2837

Shen, Y., Wang, J., Ding, Y., Gouzerh, G., Neuhaus, J.-M., and Jiang, L. (2011). The Rice RMR1 Defines a Novel Organelle as a Prevacuolar Compartment for the Protein Storage Vacuole Pathway. Molecular Plant. in press