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S2.2:  Protein turnover on lipid droplets and in the ER during pathogen defense

Till Ischebeck & George Haughn
PhD student: Patricia Scholz

Lipid droplets (LDs) are ubiquitous organelles with a unique structure. In contrast to other organelles, they are delimited by a monolayer of phospholipids that surrounds a hydrophobic core of neutral lipids, mainly triacylglycerols and sterol esters. LD function as a storage organelle in germination is well established. However, in other plant cell types their functional role is less explored. Studies of leaf LDs indicated roles in abiotic stress and in the synthesis of antimicrobial compounds. Despite these functional studies of selected LD proteins, an overview of the leaf-specific LD proteome and its alterations in reaction to external stress is still missing.
We hypothesize that leaf LDs are part of the plant cell’s defense machinery that is activated upon pathogen attack and aim to identify and characterize proteins involved here. In addition, we want to elucidate the global role of the LD- and ER-associated protein PUX10 and its binding partner CDC48 in protein turnover during pathogen defense.