Patrick J Hussey

Durham University, Durham, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (106)845.98 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The cortical endoplasmic reticulum (ER) network in plants is a highly dynamic structure, and it contacts the plasma membrane (PM) at ER-PM anchor/contact sites. These sites are known to be essential for communication between the ER and PM for lipid transport, calcium influx, and ER morphology in mammalian and fungal cells. The nature of these contact sites is unknown in plants [1 and 2], and here, we have identified a complex that forms this bridge. This complex includes (1) NET3C, which belongs to a plant-specific superfamily (NET) of actin-binding proteins [3], (2) VAP27, a plant homolog of the yeast Scs2 ER-PM contact site protein [4 and 5], and (3) the actin and microtubule networks. We demonstrate that NET3C and VAP27 localize to puncta at the PM and that NET3C and VAP27 form homodimers/oligomers and together form complexes with actin and microtubules. We show that F-actin modulates the turnover of NET3C at these puncta and microtubules regulate the exchange of VAP27 at the same sites. Based on these data, we propose a model for the structure of the plant ER-PM contact sites.
    Current Biology 06/2014; 24(12):1397-1405. · 9.49 Impact Factor
  • Junli Liu, Keith Lindsey, Patrick J Hussey
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    ABSTRACT: The pollen tube represents a model system for the study of tip growth, and the root provides a valuable system to study gene and signalling networks in plants. In the present article, using the two systems as examples, we discuss how to elucidate the regulation of complex signalling systems in plant cells. First, we discuss how hormones and related genes in plant root development form a complex interacting network, and their activities are interdependent. Therefore their roles in root development must be analysed as an integrated system, and elucidation of the regulation of each component requires the adaptation of a novel modelling methodology: regulation analysis. Secondly, hydrodynamics, cell wall and ion dynamics are all important properties that regulate plant cell growth. We discuss how regulation analysis can be applied to study the regulation of hydrodynamics, cell wall and ion dynamics, using pollen tube growth as a model system. Finally, we discuss future prospects for elucidating the regulation of complex signalling systems in plant cells.
    Biochemical Society Transactions 02/2014; 42(1):219-23. · 2.59 Impact Factor
  • Junli Liu, Patrick J Hussey
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    ABSTRACT: Hydrodynamics, cell wall and ion dynamics are all important properties that regulate pollen tube growth. Currently, the two main pollen tube growth models, the cell wall model and the hydrodynamic model do not appear to be reconcilable. Here we develop an integrative model for pollen tube growth and show that our model reproduces key experimental observations: (1) that the hypertonic condition leads to a much longer oscillatory period and that the hypotonic condition halves the oscillatory period; (2) that oscillations in turgor are experimentally undetectable; (3) that increasing the extracellular calcium concentration or decreasing the pH decreases the growth oscillatory amplitude; (4) that knockout of Raba4d, a member of the Rab family of small GTPase proteins, decreases pollen tube length after germination for 24 h. Using the model generated here, we reveal that (1) when cell wall extensibility is large, pollen tube may sustain growth at different volume changes and maintain relatively stable turgor; (2) turgor increases if cell wall extensibility decreases; (3) increasing turgor due to decrease in osmolarity in the media, although very small, increases volume change. However, increasing turgor due to decrease in cell wall extensibility decreases volume change. In this way regulation of pollen tube growth by turgor is context dependent. By changing the osmolarity in the media, the main regulatory points are extracellular osmolarity for water flow and turgor for the volume encompassed by the cell wall. However, if the viscosity of cell wall changes, the main regulatory points are turgor for water flow and wall extensibility for the volume encompassed by the cell wall. The novel methodology developed here reveals the underlying context-dependent regulatory principle of pollen tube growth.
    Frontiers in Plant Science 01/2014; 5:392. · 3.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Arabidopsis Networked (NET) superfamily are plant-specific actin binding proteins which specifically label different membrane compartments and identify specialized sites of interaction between actin and membranes unique to plants. There are 13 members of the superfamily in Arabidopsis, which group into four distinct clades or families. NET homologs are absent from the genomes of metazoa and fungi; furthermore, in plantae, NET sequences are also absent from the genome of mosses and more ancient extant plant clades. A single family of the NET proteins is found encoded in the club moss genome, an extant species of the earliest vascular plants. Gymnosperms have examples from families 4 and 3, with a hybrid form of NET1 and 2 which shows characteristics of both NET1 and NET2. In addition to NET3 and 4 families, the NET1 and pollen-expressed NET2 families are found only as independent sequences in Angiosperms. This is consistent with the divergence of reproductive actin. The four families are conserved across Monocots and Eudicots, with the numbers of members of each clade expanding at this point, due, in part, to regions of genome duplication. Since the emergence of the NET superfamily at the dawn of vascular plants, they have continued to develop and diversify in a manner which has mirrored the divergence and increasing complexity of land-plant species.
    Frontiers in Plant Science 01/2014; 5:254. · 3.60 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The cell-staining behaviour of a set of five emissive europium complexes has been studied in Nicotiana tabacum BY-2 cells and pollen tubes, Nicotiana benthamiana plant leaves and in the root hairs of the wild-type plant Arabidopsis thaliana (Columbia). The cell walls were stained selectively, notably in the tobacco BY-2 cells, by the complex [EuL1] that contains one azathiaxanthone chromophore. Internalisation only occurred in cells that had been deliberately permeabilised or were dying. No uptake was observed within healthy plant leaves. In root hairs, the cell wall was strongly stained as well as the mitochondria, revealed by time-lapsed microscopy that showed the tumbling of the mitochondria in the living tissue, confirmed by co-localisation studies. In pollen tubes, the cell wall was also stained; rapid bursting of the pollen tip occurred following incubation with [Eu.L1], triggered by excitation with 405 nm laser light. Such behaviour is consistent with local perturbation of cell wall permeability and integrity, associated with the reactivity of the chromophore triplet excited state.
    RSC Advances 01/2014; 4(18):9356-9366. · 3.71 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Vesicle trafficking plays an important role in cell division, establishment of cell polarity, and translation of environmental cues to developmental responses. However, the molecular mechanisms regulating vesicle trafficking remain poorly understood. Here, we report that the evolutionarily conserved caspase-related protease separase (EXTRA SPINDLE POLES [ESP]) is required for the establishment of cell polarity and cytokinesis in Arabidopsis thaliana. At the cellular level, separase colocalizes with microtubules and RabA2a (for RAS GENES FROM RAT BRAINA2a) GTPase-positive structures. Separase facilitates polar targeting of the auxin efflux carrier PIN-FORMED2 (PIN2) to the rootward side of the root cortex cells. Plants with the radially swollen4 (rsw4) allele with compromised separase activity, in addition to mitotic failure, display isotropic cell growth, perturbation of auxin gradient formation, slower gravitropic response in roots, and cytokinetic failure. Measurements of the dynamics of vesicle markers on the cell plate revealed an overall reduction of the delivery rates of KNOLLE and RabA2a GTPase in separase-deficient roots. Furthermore, dissociation of the clathrin light chain, a protein that plays major role in the formation of coated vesicles, was slower in rsw4 than in the control. Our results demonstrate that separase is a key regulator of vesicle trafficking, which is indispensable for cytokinesis and the establishment of cell polarity.
    The Plant Cell 06/2013; 25(6):2171-86. · 9.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Complex animals use a wide variety of adaptor proteins to produce specialized sites of interaction between actin and membranes. Plants do not have these protein families, yet actin-membrane interactions within plant cells are critical for the positioning of subcellular compartments, for coordinating intercellular communication, and for membrane deformation [1]. Novel factors are therefore likely to provide interfaces at actin-membrane contacts in plants, but their identity has remained obscure. Here we identify the plant-specific Networked (NET) superfamily of actin-binding proteins, members of which localize to the actin cytoskeleton and specify different membrane compartments. The founding member of the NET superfamily, NET1A, is anchored at the plasma membrane and predominates at cell junctions, the plasmodesmata. NET1A binds directly to actin filaments via a novel actin-binding domain that defines a superfamily of thirteen Arabidopsis proteins divided into four distinct phylogenetic clades. Members of other clades identify interactions at the tonoplast, nuclear membrane, and pollen tube plasma membrane, emphasizing the role of this superfamily in mediating actin-membrane interactions.
    Current biology: CB 07/2012; 22(17):1595-600. · 10.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Guard cell actin reorganization has been observed in stomatal responses to a wide array of stimuli. However, how the guard cell signaling machinery regulates actin dynamics is poorly understood. Here, we report the identification of an allele of the Arabidopsis thaliana ACTIN-RELATED PROTEIN C2/DISTORTED TRICHOMES2 (ARPC2) locus (encoding the ARPC2 subunit of the ARP2/3 complex) designated high sugar response3 (hsr3). The hsr3 mutant showed increased transpirational water loss that was mainly due to a lesion in stomatal regulation. Stomatal bioassay analyses revealed that guard cell sensitivity to external stimuli, such as abscisic acid (ABA), CaCl(2), and light/dark transition, was reduced or abolished in hsr3. Analysis of a nonallelic mutant of the ARP2/3 complex suggested no pleiotropic effect of ARPC2 beyond its function in the complex in regard to stomatal regulation. When treated with ABA, guard cell actin filaments underwent fast disruption in wild-type plants, whereas those in hsr3 remained largely bundled. The ABA insensitivity phenotype of hsr3 was rescued by cytochalasin D treatment, suggesting that the aberrant stomatal response was a consequence of bundled actin filaments. Our work indicates that regulation of actin reassembly through ARP2/3 complex activity is crucial for stomatal regulation.
    The Plant Cell 05/2012; 24(5):2031-40. · 9.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In 2008 we published the first set of guidelines for standardizing research in autophagy. Since then, research on this topic has continued to accelerate, and many new scientists have entered the field. Our knowledge base and relevant new technologies have also been expanding. Accordingly, it is important to update these guidelines for monitoring autophagy in different organisms. Various reviews have described the range of assays that have been used for this purpose. Nevertheless, there continues to be confusion regarding acceptable methods to measure autophagy, especially in multicellular eukaryotes. A key point that needs to be emphasized is that there is a difference between measurements that monitor the numbers or volume of autophagic elements (e.g., autophagosomes or autolysosomes) at any stage of the autophagic process vs. those that measure flux through the autophagy pathway (i.e., the complete process); thus, a block in macroautophagy that results in autophagosome accumulation needs to be differentiated from stimuli that result in increased autophagic activity, defined as increased autophagy induction coupled with increased delivery to, and degradation within, lysosomes (in most higher eukaryotes and some protists such as Dictyostelium) or the vacuole (in plants and fungi). In other words, it is especially important that investigators new to the field understand that the appearance of more autophagosomes does not necessarily equate with more autophagy. In fact, in many cases, autophagosomes accumulate because of a block in trafficking to lysosomes without a concomitant change in autophagosome biogenesis, whereas an increase in autolysosomes may reflect a reduction in degradative activity. Here, we present a set of guidelines for the selection and interpretation of methods for use by investigators who aim to examine macroautophagy and related processes, as well as for reviewers who need to provide realistic and reasonable critiques of papers that are focused on these processes. These guidelines are not meant to be a formulaic set of rules, because the appropriate assays depend in part on the question being asked and the system being used. In addition, we emphasize that no individual assay is guaranteed to be the most appropriate one in every situation, and we strongly recommend the use of multiple assays to monitor autophagy. In these guidelines, we consider these various methods of assessing autophagy and what information can, or cannot, be obtained from them. Finally, by discussing the merits and limits of particular autophagy assays, we hope to encourage technical innovation in the field.
    Autophagy 04/2012; 8(4):445. · 12.04 Impact Factor
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    Autophagy 04/2012; 8(4):1-100. · 12.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: In 2008 we published the first set of guidelines for standardizing research in autophagy. Since then, research on this topic has continued to accelerate, and many new scientists have entered the field. Our knowledge base and relevant new technologies have also been expanding. Accordingly, it is important to update these guidelines for monitoring autophagy in different organisms. Various reviews have described the range of assays that have been used for this purpose. Nevertheless, there continues to be confusion regarding acceptable methods to measure autophagy, especially in multicellular eukaryotes. A key point that needs to be emphasized is that there is a difference between measurements that monitor the numbers or volume of autophagic elements (e.g., autophagosomes or autolysosomes) at any stage of the autophagic process versus those that measure flux through the autophagy pathway (i.e., the complete process);5,6 thus, a block in macroautophagy that results in autophagosome accumulation needs to be differentiated from stimuli that result in increased autophagic activity, defined as increased autophagy induction coupled with increased delivery to, and degradation within, lysosomes (in most higher eukaryotes and some protists such as Dictyostelium) or the vacuole (in plants and fungi). In other words, it is especially important that investigators new to the field understand that the appearance of more autophagosomes does not necessarily equate with more autophagy. In fact, in many cases, autophagosomes accumulate because of a block in trafficking to lysosomes without a concomitant change in autophagosome biogenesis, whereas an increase in autolysosomes may reflect a reduction in degradative activity. Here, we present a set of guidelines for the selection and interpretation of methods for use by investigators who aim to examine macroautophagy and related processes, as well as for reviewers who need to provide realistic and reasonable critiques of papers that are focused on these processes. These guidelines are not meant to be a formulaic set of rules, because the appropriate assays depend in part on the question being asked and the system being used. In addition, we emphasize that no individual assay is guaranteed to be the most appropriate one in every situation, and we strongly recommend the use of multiple assays to monitor autophagy. In these guidelines, we consider these various methods of assessing autophagy and what information can, or cannot, be obtained from them. Finally, by discussing the merits and limits of particular autophagy assays, we hope to encourage technical innovation in the field.
    Autophagy 04/2012; 8(4). · 12.04 Impact Factor
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In 2008 we published the first set of guidelines for standardizing research in autophagy. Since then, research on this topic has continued to accelerate, and many new scientists have entered the field. Our knowledge base and relevant new technologies have also been expanding. Accordingly, it is important to update these guidelines for monitoring autophagy in different organisms. Various reviews have described the range of assays that have been used for this purpose. Nevertheless, there continues to be confusion regarding acceptable methods to measure autophagy, especially in multicellular eukaryotes. A key point that needs to be emphasized is that there is a difference between measurements that monitor the numbers or volume of autophagic elements (e.g., autophagosomes or autolysosomes) at any stage of the autophagic process vs. those that measure flux through the autophagy pathway (i.e., the complete process); thus, a block in macroautophagy that results in autophagosome accumulation needs to be differentiated from stimuli that result in increased autophagic activity, defined as increased autophagy induction coupled with increased delivery to, and degradation within, lysosomes (in most higher eukaryotes and some protists such as Dictyostelium) or the vacuole (in plants and fungi). In other words, it is especially important that investigators new to the field understand that the appearance of more autophagosomes does not necessarily equate with more autophagy. In fact, in many cases, autophagosomes accumulate because of a block in trafficking to lysosomes without a concomitant change in autophagosome biogenesis, whereas an increase in autolysosomes may reflect a reduction in degradative activity. Here, we present a set of guidelines for the selection and interpretation of methods for use by investigators who aim to examine macroautophagy and related processes, as well as for reviewers who need to provide realistic and reasonable critiques of papers that are focused on these processes. These guidelines are not meant to be a formulaic set of rules, because the appropriate assays depend in part on the question being asked and the system being used. In addition, we emphasize that no individual assay is guaranteed to be the most appropriate one in every situation, and we strongly recommend the use of multiple assays to monitor autophagy. In these guidelines, we consider these various methods of assessing autophagy and what information can, or cannot, be obtained from them. Finally, by discussing the merits and limits of particular autophagy assays, we hope to encourage technical innovation in the field.
    Autophagy 04/2012; 8(4):445-544. · 12.04 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Chemical modulators are powerful tools to investigate biological processes. To identify circadian clock effectors, we screened a natural product library in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana. Two compounds, prieurianin (Pri) and prieurianin acetate, were identified as causing a shorter circadian period. Recently, Pri was independently identified as a vesicle trafficking inhibitor and re-named endosidin 1 (ES1). Here we show that Pri primarily affects actin filament flexibility in vivo, later resulting in reduced severing and filament depolymerization. This stabilization of the actin cytoskeleton subsequently causes changes in vesicle trafficking. Pri also affected microfilaments in mammalian cells, indicating that its target is highly conserved; however, it did not alter actin dynamics in vitro, suggesting that its activity requires the presence of actin-associated proteins. Furthermore, well-characterized actin inhibitors shortened the period length of the Arabidopsis clock in a similar way to Pri, supporting the idea that Pri affects rhythms by altering the actin network. We conclude that actin-associated processes influence the circadian system in a light-dependent manner, but their disruption does not abolish rhythmicity. In summary, we propose that the primary effect of Pri is to stabilize the actin cytoskeleton system, thereby affecting endosome trafficking. Pri appears to stabilize actin filaments by a different mechanism from previously described inhibitors, and will be a useful tool to study actin-related cellular processes.
    The Plant Journal 03/2012; 71(2):338-52. · 6.58 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Plant resistance proteins (R-proteins) are key components of the plant immune system activated in response to a plethora of different pathogens. R-proteins are P-loop NTPase superfamily members, and current models describe their main function as ATPases in defense signaling pathways. Here we show that a subset of R-proteins have evolved a new function to combat pathogen infection. This subset of R-proteins possesses a nucleotide phosphatase activity in the nucleotide-binding domain. Related R-proteins that fall in the same phylogenetic clade all show the same nucleotide phosphatase activity indicating a conserved function within at least a subset of R-proteins. R-protein nucleotide phosphatases catalyze the production of nucleoside from nucleotide with the nucleotide monophosphate as the preferred substrate. Mutation of conserved catalytic residues substantially reduced activity consistent with the biochemistry of P-loop NTPases. Kinetic analysis, analytical gel filtration, and chemical cross-linking demonstrated that the nucleotide-binding domain was active as a multimer. Nuclear magnetic resonance and nucleotide analogues identified the terminal phosphate bond as the target of a reaction that utilized a metal-mediated nucleophilic attack by water on the phosphoester. In conclusion, we have identified a group of R-proteins with a unique function. This biochemical activity appears to have co-evolved with plants in signaling pathways designed to resist pathogen attack.
    Journal of Biological Chemistry 12/2011; 287(6):4023-32. · 4.65 Impact Factor
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    Andrei P Smertenko, Bernard Piette, Patrick J Hussey
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    ABSTRACT: The phragmoplast coordinates cytokinesis in plants [1]. It directs vesicles to the midzone, the site where they coalesce to form the new cell plate. Failure in phragmoplast function results in aborted or incomplete cytokinesis leading to embryo lethality, morphological defects, or multinucleate cells [2, 3]. The asymmetry of vesicular traffic is regulated by microtubules [1, 4, 5, 6], and the current model suggests that this asymmetry is established and maintained through treadmilling of parallel microtubules. However, we have analyzed the behavior of microtubules in the phragmoplast using live-cell imaging coupled with mathematical modeling and dynamic simulations and report that microtubules initiate randomly in the phragmoplast and that the majority exhibit dynamic instability with higher turnover rates nearer to the midzone. The directional transport of vesicles is possible because the majority of the microtubules polymerize toward the midzone. Here, we propose the first inclusive model where microtubule dynamics and phragmoplast asymmetry are consistent with the localization and activity of proteins known to regulate microtubule assembly and disassembly.
    Current biology: CB 11/2011; 21(22):1924-30. · 10.99 Impact Factor
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    Junli Liu, Patrick Hussey
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    ABSTRACT: Essential features of pollen tube growth are polarization of extracellular ion fluxes, intracellular ion gradients, and oscillating dynamics. These features in pollen tube growth are regulated by a wide range of spatiotemporally organized functions such as exocytosis and endocytosis, actin cytoskeleton reorganization, cell wall deposition and assembly, intracellular signalling, fertilization, and self-incompatibility. Recently, by developing a compartmental model, we have demonstrated that the tip and shank in a pollen tube combine in an integrative and self-regulatory system of ion and growth dynamics. Recent developments in modelling and the wealth of experimental data can be used to develop a systems model that provides an integrative view of the the interactions between the different functions that affect pollen tube growth.
    Plant signaling & behavior 04/2011; 6(4):520-2.
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    ABSTRACT: A major challenge in plant biology is to understand how functions in plant cells emerge from interactions between molecular components. Computational and mathematical modelling can encapsulate the relationships between molecular components and reveal how biological functions emerge. We review recent progress in modelling in metabolism, growth, signalling and circadian rhythms in plant cells. We discuss challenges and opportunities for future directions.
    Current opinion in plant biology 11/2010; 13(6):744-9. · 10.33 Impact Factor
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    Andrei P Smertenko, Michael J Deeks, Patrick J Hussey
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    ABSTRACT: Spatial-temporal flexibility of the actin filament network (F-actin) is essential for all basic cellular functions and is governed by a stochastic dynamic model. In this model, actin filaments that randomly polymerise from a pool of free actin are bundled with other filaments and severed by ADF/cofilin. The fate of the severed fragments is not known. It has been proposed that the fragments are disassembled and the monomeric actin recycled for the polymerisation of new filaments. Here, we have generated tobacco cell lines and Arabidopsis plants expressing the actin marker Lifeact to address the mechanisms of F-actin reorganisation in vivo. We found that F-actin is more dynamic in isotropically expanding cells and that the density of the network changes with a periodicity of 70 seconds. The depolymerisation rate, but not the polymerisation rate, of F-actin increases when microtubules are destabilised. New filaments can be assembled from shorter free cytoplasmic fragments, from the products of F-actin severing and by polymerisation from the ends of extant filaments. Thus, remodelling of F-actin might not require bulk depolymerisation of the entire network, but could occur via severing and end-joining of existing polymers.
    Journal of Cell Science 09/2010; 123(Pt 17):3019-28. · 5.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: There is a continuing need for bioprobes that are target-specific and combine speed of delivery with maintenance of normal cell behaviour. Towards this end, we are developing small pro-fluorescent molecules that provide such specificity through chemical activation by biomolecules. We have generated a set of BODIPY (boron dipyrromethane) fluorophores, including one that is intrinsically non-fluorescent but on incubation with cells becomes fluorescent at its target site. Addition of these BODIPY probes to plant cells identifies peroxisomes, as verified by co-localization with an SKL-FP construct. Interestingly, in mammalian cells, co-localization with the mammalian peroxisomal marker SelectFX(TM) was not observed. These data suggest fundamental differences in peroxisome composition, development or function between plant and animal cells.
    The Plant Journal 05/2010; 62(3):529-38. · 6.58 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

4k Citations
845.98 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2001–2014
    • Durham University
      • School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
      Durham, England, United Kingdom
  • 2012
    • University of Michigan
      • Life Sciences Institute
      Ann Arbor, MI, United States
  • 2009
    • CSU Mentor
      Long Beach, California, United States
  • 2002
    • The University of Edinburgh
      • School of Biomedical Sciences
      Edinburgh, SCT, United Kingdom
    • University of Leicester
      • Department of Biology
      Leicester, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 2001–2002
    • John Innes Centre
      • Department of Cell and Developmental Biology
      Norwich, England, United Kingdom
  • 1993–2001
    • Royal Holloway, University of London
      • • Department of Biological Sciences
      • • Division of Biochemistry
      Egham, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 1992–1998
    • University of London
      • School of Biological Sciences
      Londinium, England, United Kingdom
  • 1997
    • Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México
      • Institute for Biomedical Investigation
      Mexico City, The Federal District, Mexico
  • 1990–1992
    • University of Minnesota Duluth
      • Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry
      Duluth, Minnesota, United States