Growth control and cell wall signaling in plants

Annu Rev Plant Biol. 2012;63:381-407. doi: 10.1146/annurev-arplant-042811-105449. Epub 2012 Jan 3.


Plant cell walls have the remarkable property of combining extreme tensile strength with extensibility. The maintenance of such an exoskeleton creates nontrivial challenges for the plant cell: How can it control cell wall assembly and remodeling during growth while maintaining mechanical integrity? How can it deal with cell wall damage inflicted by herbivores, pathogens, or abiotic stresses? These processes likely require mechanisms to keep the cell informed about the status of the cell wall. In yeast, a cell wall integrity (CWI) signaling pathway has been described in great detail; in plants, the existence of CWI signaling has been demonstrated, but little is known about the signaling pathways involved. In this review, we first describe cell wall-related processes that may require or can be targets of CWI signaling and then discuss our current understanding of CWI signaling pathways and future prospects in this emerging field of plant biology.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism
  • Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases / metabolism
  • Cell Wall / chemistry
  • Cell Wall / metabolism*
  • Glucans / metabolism
  • Pectins / metabolism
  • Phosphotransferases / metabolism
  • Plant Cells / metabolism*
  • Plant Development / physiology*
  • Plant Proteins / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology
  • Water / metabolism
  • Xylans / metabolism


  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • Glucans
  • Plant Proteins
  • Xylans
  • Water
  • xyloglucan
  • Pectins
  • Phosphotransferases
  • CRLK1 protein, Arabidopsis
  • Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases