Evidence of a novel cell signaling role for extracellular adenosine triphosphates and diphosphates in Arabidopsis

Collene R. Jeter, Wenqiang Tang, Elizabeth Henaff, Tim Butterfield, Stanley J. Roux

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Extracellular ATP is a known receptor agonist in animals and was previously shown to alter plant growth, and so we investigated whether ATP derivatives could function outside plant cells as signaling agents. Signaling responses induced by exogenous nucleotides in animal cells typically include increases in free cytoplasmic calcium concentration ([Ca2+]cyt). We have evaluated the ability of exogenously applied adenosine 5′-[γ- thio]triphosphate (ATPγS), adenosine 5′-[β-thio]diphosphate (ADPβS), and adenosine 5′-O-thiomonophosphate to alter [Ca 2+]cyt in intact apoaequorin transgenic Arabidopsis thaliana seedlings. ATPγS and ADPβS increase [Ca2+] cyt, and this increase is enhanced further when the nucleotides are added with the elicitor oligogalacturonic acid. Exogenous treatment with ATP also increases the level of transcripts encoding mitogen-activated protein kinases and proteins involved in ethylene biosynthesis and signal transduction. The increase in [Ca2+]cyt induced by nucleotide derivatives can be ablated by Ca2+-channel blocking agents and by the calcium chelator 1,2-bis(o-aminophenoxy)ethane-N,N,N′,N′- tetraacetic acid (BAPTA), and the changes in gene expression can be partially blocked by these agents. These observations suggest that extracellular ATP can activate calcium-mediated cell-signaling pathways in plants, potentially playing a physiological role in transducing stress and wound responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2652-2664
Number of pages13
JournalPlant Cell
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology


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