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Programmed cell death (PCD) plays a major role in plant development and defense throughout the plant kingdom. Within animal systems, it is well accepted that caspases play a major role in the PCD process, although no true caspases have yet to be identified in plants. Despite this, vast amounts of evidence suggest the existence of caspase-like proteases in plants. The lace plant (Aponogeton madagascariensis) forms perforations in a predictable pattern between longitudinal and transverse veins over its entire leaf surface via PCD. Due to the thin nature of the leaf, allowing for long-term live cell imaging, a perfected method for sterile culture, as well as the feasibility of pharmacological experiments, the lace plant provides an excellent model to study developmental PCD. In this review, we report the suitability of the lace plant as a novel organism to study proteases in vivo during developmentally regulated cell death. Copyright © Physiologia Plantarum 2012.


Christina E N Lord, Arunika H L A N Gunawardena. The lace plant: a novel model system to study plant proteases during developmental programmed cell death in vivo. Physiologia plantarum. 2012 May;145(1):114-20

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PMID: 22224480

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