Screening and Characterization of Plant Cell Walls Using Carbohydrate Microarrays
Plant cells are surrounded by cell walls built largely from complex carbohydrates. The primary walls of growing plant cells consist of interdependent networks of three polysaccharide classes: cellulose, cross-linking glycans (also known as hemicelluloses), and pectins. Cellulose microfibrils are tethered together by cross-linking glycans, and this assembly forms the major load-bearing component of primary walls, which is infiltrated with pectic polymers. In the secondary walls of woody tissues, pectins are much reduced and walls are reinforced with the phenolic polymer lignin. Plant cell walls are essential for plant life and also have numerous industrial applications, ranging from wood to nutraceuticals. Enhancing our knowledge of cell wall biology and the effective use of cell wall materials is dependent to a large extent on being able to analyse their fine structures. We have developed a suite of techniques based on microarrays probed with monoclonal antibodies with specificity for cell wall components, and here we present practical protocols for this type of analysis.
Key wordsCarbohydrate microarrays Plant cell walls Polysaccharides Antibodies CoMPP
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