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Department of Plant Pathology Molecular Plant Pathology Laboratory

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Tanaka Lab – Research

Plants are continuously exposed to various stresses caused by changes in the environment and attacks by other organisms, i.e., abiotic and biotic stresses. Therefore, plants require sophisticated surveillance systems to detect potentially life-threatening events by recognizing danger signals. Indeed, plants have evolved a large number of receptor kinases, most of which are likely involved in the response to different stresses. These receptors recognize not only exogenous, enemy-derived molecules (i.e., MAMP and HAMP) but also endogenous molecules from own damaged cells and tissues as danger signals, referred to as damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs). Plants sense those molecular patterns to evoke immune responses and damage healing. Our research focuses on the function of DAMP signals for in-depth understanding of plant defense mechanisms against pathogen and insect attacks.

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