Chaudhuri B, Niittylä T, Hörmann F, Frommer WB
Fluxomics with ratiometric metabolite dyes
Plant Signal Behav. 2007, 2(2):120-2
Today's major excitement in biology centers on signaling: How can a cell or organism measure the myriad of environmental cues, integrate it, and acclimate to the new conditions? Hormonal signals and second messengers are in the focus of most of these studies, e.g., regulation of glucose transporter GLUT4 cycling by insulin, or regulation of plant growth by auxin or brassinosteroids.1-3 In comparison, we generally assume that we know almost everything about basic metabolism since it has been studied for many decades; for example we know since the early 80s that allosteric regulation by fructose-2,6-bisphophate plays an important role in regulating glycolysis in plants and animals.4 This may be the reason why studies of metabolism appear to be a bit out of fashion. But if we look to other organisms such as E. coli or yeast, we rapidly realize that metabolism is controlled by complex interconnected signaling networks, and that we understand little of these signaling networks in humans and plants.5,6 As it turns out, the cell registers many metabolites, and flux through the pathways is regulated using complex signaling networks that involve calcium as well as hormones.
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