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Review
. 2019 Jul;100(4-5):351-365.
doi: 10.1007/s11103-019-00872-4. Epub 2019 Apr 27.

Structure, Evolution and Diverse Physiological Roles of SWEET Sugar Transporters in Plants

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Review

Structure, Evolution and Diverse Physiological Roles of SWEET Sugar Transporters in Plants

Gajendra Singh Jeena et al. Plant Mol Biol. .

Abstract

Present review describes the structure, evolution, transport mechanism and physiological functions of SWEETs. Their application using TALENs and CRISPR/CAS9 based genomic editing approach is discussed. Sugars Will Eventually be Exported Transporters (SWEET) proteins were first identified in plants as the novel family of sugar transporters which mediates the translocation of sugars across cell membranes. The SWEET family of sugar transporters is unique in terms of their structure which contains seven predicted transmembrane domains with two internal triple-helix bundles which possibly originate due to prokaryotic gene duplication. SWEETs perform diverse physiological functions such as pollen nutrition, nectar secretion, seed filling, phloem loading, and pathogen nutrition which we have discussed in the present review. We also discuss how transcriptional activator-like effector nucleases (TALENs) and CRISPR/CAS9 genome editing tools are used to engineer SWEET mutants which modulate pathogen resistance in plants and its applications in the field of agriculture. The expression of SWEETs promises to implement insights into many other cellular transport mechanisms. To conclude, the present review highlights the recent aspects which will further develop better understanding of molecular evolution, structure, and function of SWEET transporters in plants.

Keywords: Pathogen nutrition; Phloem loading; SWEETs; Sucrose efflux; Sugar transporters; TALENs.

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