Attack & Defense in Plants
Attack & Defense in Plants 2023-24
School Of Natural Sciences
Module - Semester 2
The strategies that plants employ to respond to biotic and abiotic stresses are currently the subject of intensive research, much of it at the molecular level. This module examines how higher plants cope with external challenges such as pathogen and pest attack by initiating specific gene expression programmes that act to minimise and overcome the effects of the stress. Topics covered include changes in cell wall protein composition in response to wounding and mechanical stress; the synthesis of phytoalexins; the role jasmonate, systemin, and salicylic acid play in localised and systemic responses; the induction of the systemic acquired resistance response and the use of transgenics to unravel the function of extensin cell wall proteins within the plant. The course will be illustrated with examples of ongoing research that is currently in progress within SBS.
- Appreciate that plant defence responses are varied and complex and differentiated in timing.
- Appreciate that the complexity of plant defence responses is a consequence of variations of gene expression.
- Demonstrate an integrated understanding of the response of the plant to pathogen and pest attack.
- Demonstrate knowledge of the major pathways involved in plant defence and how they can be studied at the molecular level.
- Research the most recent topics in plant defense and prepare a presentation.