Calcium transport across plant membranes: mechanisms and functions

Vadim Demidchik, Sergey Shabala, Stanislav Isayenkov, Tracey A. Cuin, Igor Pottosin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

185 Citations (Scopus)


(Table presented.). Summary: Calcium is an essential structural, metabolic and signalling element. The physiological functions of Ca2+ are enabled by its orchestrated transport across cell membranes, mediated by Ca2+-permeable ion channels, Ca2+-ATPases and Ca2+/H+ exchangers. Bioinformatics analysis has not determined any Ca2+-selective filters in plant ion channels, but electrophysiological tests do reveal Ca2+ conductances in plant membranes. The biophysical characteristics of plant Ca2+ conductances have been studied in detail and were recently complemented by molecular genetic approaches. Plant Ca2+ conductances are mediated by several families of ion channels, including cyclic nucleotide-gated channels (CNGCs), ionotropic glutamate receptors, two-pore channel 1 (TPC1), annexins and several types of mechanosensitive channels. Key Ca2+-mediated reactions (e.g. sensing of temperature, gravity, touch and hormones, and cell elongation and guard cell closure) have now been associated with the activities of specific subunits from these families. Structural studies have demonstrated a unique selectivity filter in TPC1, which is passable for hydrated divalent cations. The hypothesis of a ROS-Ca2+ hub is discussed, linking Ca2+ transport to ROS generation. CNGC inactivation by cytosolic Ca2+, leading to the termination of Ca2+ signals, is now mechanistically explained. The structure–function relationships of Ca2+-ATPases and Ca2+/H+ exchangers, and their regulation and physiological roles are analysed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-69
Number of pages21
JournalNew Phytologist
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018
Externally publishedYes


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