Redox-Signaling and Chromatin Modulation

Nitric oxide (NO) is a reactive free radical with pleiotropic function that is not only involved in regulation of plant growth and development, but also in response reactions to biotic and abiotic stressors. It mainly acts by post-translationally modifying proteins. The most important mode of action of NO is the covalent attachment to the thiol group of cysteine residues resulting in the formation of S-nitrosothiols (SNO). Other major types of NO-dependent modifications are metal nitrosylation and tyrosine nitration. Besides the endogenous produced NO in prokaryotes and eukaryotes, NO is also naturally present in the atmosphere. Atmospheric NOx (mainly the radical NO and NO2) can interfere with the plant redox-system and depending upon the concentration and exposure time NOx can affect NO signaling in plants positively or negatively. Our work is focusing on the signaling function of NO, the effect of atmospheric NO on plant physiology, growth and development, NO-fixing function of plants and how plants cope with enhanced levels of NO.

Redox-signalling/biochemistry in plant-environment interaction.
Stress-induced NO production affects gene expression and results in stress response.

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