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Sello, Simone; Perotto, Jennifer; Carraretto, Luca; Szabò, Ildikò; Vothknecht, Ute C. and Navazio, Lorella (2016): Dissecting stimulus-specific Ca2+ signals in amyloplasts and chloroplasts of Arabidopsis thaliana cell suspension cultures. In: Journal of Experimental Botany, Vol. 67, No. 13: pp. 3965-3974

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Arabidopsis suspension-cultured cells stably expressing aequorin in the plastid stroma were used as a suitable tool to dissect differential Ca2+ responses of non-green plastids versus chloroplasts to several environmental cues.Calcium is used by plants as an intracellular messenger in the detection of and response to a plethora of environmental stimuli and contributes to a fine-tuned internal regulation. Interest in the role of different subcellular compartments in Ca2+ homeostasis and signalling has been growing in recent years. This work has evaluated the potential participation of non-green plastids and chloroplasts in the plant Ca2+ signalling network using heterotrophic and autotrophic cell suspension cultures from Arabidopsis thaliana plant lines stably expressing the bioluminescent Ca2+ reporter aequorin targeted to the plastid stroma. Our results indicate that both amyloplasts and chloroplasts are involved in transient Ca2+ increases in the plastid stroma induced by several environmental stimuli, suggesting that these two functional types of plastids are endowed with similar mechanisms for handling Ca2+. A comparison of the Ca2+ trace kinetics recorded in parallel in the plastid stroma, the surface of the outer membrane of the plastid envelope, and the cytosol indicated that plastids play an essential role in switching off different cytosolic Ca2+ signals. Interestingly, a transient stromal Ca2+ signal in response to the light-to-dark transition was observed in chloroplasts, but not amyloplasts. Moreover, significant differences in the amplitude of specific plastidial Ca2+ changes emerged when the photosynthetic metabolism of chloroplasts was reactivated by light. In summary, our work highlights differences between non-green plastids and chloroplasts in terms of Ca2+ dynamics in response to environmental stimuli.

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