Oligosaccharins: structures and signal transduction

  • François Côté
  • Michael G. Hahn


Oligosaccharins are complex carbohydrates that can function in plants as molecular signals that regulate growth, development, and survival in the environment [3]. Studies of plant-microorganism interactions yielded the first evidence that oligosaccharins could serve as biological signals. Much of this research focused on the synthesis and accumulation of antimicrobial phytoalexins in response to microbial attack. Phytoalexin synthesis and accumulation are observed not only after microbial infection, but also after treatment of plant tissue with cell-free extracts of microbial origin. The active components in these extracts are commonly referred to as ‘elicitors’. The term ‘elicitor’ was originally used to refer to molecules and other stimuli that induce the synthesis and accumulation of phytoalexins in plant cells [130], but is now commonly used for molecules that stimulate any plant defense mechanism [68, 70, 71, 104].

Key words

elicitors oligosaccharins phytoalexin synthesis phytoalexin accumulation signal transduction 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • François Côté
    • 1
  • Michael G. Hahn
    • 1
  1. 1.Complex Carbohydrate Research Center and Department of BotanyUniversity of GeorgiaAthensUSA

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