This training network addresses the secretory pathway in plants with a special focus on proteins, their interactions with each other and other biomolecules, and the potential of this pathway for biotechnology. The network partners provide non-overlapping expertise in methods to elucidate bio-molecular interactions, ranging from genetic approaches via co-localisation to specific protein-protein interactions using the most advanced protocols. The aims are
1) to understand receptor function and signal transduction controlling protein sorting and vesicle transport,
2) the identification of novel sorting receptors and sorting mechanisms that are likely to be unique to the plant kingdom,
3) the molecular characterisation of interactions between chaperones and their ligands.
4) To study a group of products of the secretory pathway within a set of specific model system, elucidate their step-wise biosynthesis and transport, and the way in which manipulation of: the pathway is possible to redirect these molecules or to prevent turnover.
5) The predicted spin-off from this work will firstly contribute to the fundamental insight into the secretory pathway of plants and, secondly, help to evaluate the potential of the secretory pathway for directed pathway engineering in order to maximise productivity in plants of heterologous proteins with high added value, such as human serum proteins, antibodies, or vaccines.
Within the framework of this research programme, we aim to set the stage for contained plant fermentations in bioreactors with the help of small-scale feasibility studies. We believe this programme will be instrumental in the development of high capacity and cost effective production systems combined with environmentally save procedures, which is currently an important issue to re-gain public acceptance of biotechnological applications for plant cells.
Funding SchemeNET - Research network contracts
CB2 1GA Cambridge
751 23 Uppsala
6709 PD Wageningen