Dr. Antje Heese, Associate Professor, Division of Biochemistry, University of Missouri-Columbia, presents “Navigating the Cellular Seas: Clathrin-Coated Vesicle Components in Plant Immunity”

Wednesday, October 16, at 12:10 p.m. in Bryan Hall 305.

Dr. Heese’s lab is interested in elucidating the role of membrane trafficking in plant innate immunity. Recent studies indicate that membrane trafficking plays an integral part in plant defenses against invading pathogens because mutations in several plant membrane trafficking components lead to reduced pathogen resistance.

In the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, innate immunity against bacteria is in part mediated by FLS2, a plasma membrane localized receptor-like kinase. FLS2 perceives a 22 aa-peptide (flg22) derived from flagellin, the building block of the bacterial flagellum. Recognition of flg22 induces defense signaling responses and contributes to plant disease resistance by restricting bacterial invasion. Elicitation with flg22 also leads to ligand-induced endocytosis and degradation of FLS2. However, so far components of the endocytic machinery required for FLS2 internalization and degradation remain largely unknown. The Heese lab is using a combination of protein biochemical, cell biological and molecular biological approaches to identify and characterize proteins functioning in FLS2 endocytosis as well as in other flg22-dependent membrane trafficking events.

For further information on Dr. Heese, visit her profile at: https://cafnr.missouri.edu/person/antje-heese/