The evolution of Ca2+ signalling in photosynthetic eukaryotes

Authors

  • John H. F. Bothwell,

    Corresponding author
    1. Marine Biological Association of the UK, The Laboratory, Citadel Hill, Plymouth, PL1 2PB, UK;
      Author for correspondence:John Bothwell Tel: +44 1752 633250 Fax: +44 1752 633102 Email: jhbot@mba.ac.uk
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  • Carl K.-Y. Ng

    1. Department of Botany, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Republic of Ireland
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Author for correspondence:John Bothwell Tel: +44 1752 633250 Fax: +44 1752 633102 Email: jhbot@mba.ac.uk

Abstract

Contents

  • Summary 1

  • I. Introduction 1
  • II. Homology vs homoplasy 2
  • III. The structure and variation of [Ca2+]cyt signalling pathways 7
  • IV. A putative course of descent for plant [Ca2+]cyt signalling 9
  • V. Conclusion 13
  •  Acknowledgements 14

  • References 14

Summary

It is likely that cytosolic Ca2+ elevations have played a part in eukaryotic signal transduction for about the last 2 Gyr, being mediated by a group of molecules which are collectively known as the [Ca2+]cyt signalling toolkit. Different eukaryotes often display strikingly similar [Ca2+]cyt signalling elevations, which may reflect conservation of toolkit components (homology) or similar constraints acting on different toolkits (homoplasy). Certain toolkit components, which are presumably ancestral, are shared by plants and animals, but some components are unique to photosynthetic organisms. We propose that the structure of modern plant [Ca2+]cyt signalling toolkits may be explained by their modular adaptation from earlier pathways.

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