Calcium plays a key role in plant growth and development because changes in cellular Ca2+, acting through Ca2+-modulated proteins and their targets, reguÂ late an astonishing variety of cellular processes. The regulatory actions of Ca2+ range from control of ion transport to gene expression and are possible beÂ cause of a homeostatic system that regulates Ca2+ levels. The development of this homeostatic system is evolutionarily ancient and probably reflects a bioÂ chemical necessity of maintaining low levels of Ca2+ in the phosphate-rich environment of the cytosol (101). Evolutionary invention, however, has turned this requirement into a complex system for regulating cellular function through controlled fluctuations in Ca2+ levels. Progress in understanding the Ca2+ homeostat and its significance for signaling in plant cells has been accelerated by direct measurements of ion channel activities and Ca2+ levels in living cells, and by molecular characterization of Ca2+ transport proteins. The convergence of these three kinds of information has shown that the cellular machinery for establishing Ca2+ homeostasis in plants, although used to diÂ verse ends, is remarkably similar to that found in other eukaryotic cells. This review considers what has been learned recently about the components of the Ca2+ homeostat in
Annual Review of Plant Biology – Annual Reviews
Published: Jun 1, 1995
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