Dr. Adam Mott, Dept Biology, Univ Toronto, Scarborough Campus
To thrive, plants must be able to quickly recognize and respond to changing environmental conditions and pathogen attack. The perception of many signals is accomplished through the collective action of members of the leucine-rich repeat receptor kinase (LRR-RK) family, of which there are 225 in Arabidopsis. Upon detection of an extracellular signal, these receptors physically interact to form signaling-competent structures able to integrate complex signals to guide plant defence and growth. Using a high-throughput interaction screen we determined the physical interactions between 200 of the LRR-RLKs from Arabidopsis. Using network analysis and community detection we have detected distinct, but interconnected, subnetworks that show evidence of specialized biological activity and demonstrated novel function for several previous unstudied receptors. In addition, we show that the overall network structure is critical for proper signaling responses, and disruptions can have unexpected consequences at a distance.