Designing the deconstruction of plant cell walls

Maureen C McCann, Nicholas C Carpita
Current Opinion in Plant Biology 2008, 11 (3): 314-20
Cell wall architecture plays a key role in the regulation of plant cell growth and differentiation into specific cell types. Gaining genetic control of the amount, composition, and structure of cell walls in different cell types will impact both the quantity and yield of fermentable sugars from biomass for biofuels production. The recalcitrance of plant biomass to degradation is a function of how polymers crosslink and aggregate within walls. Novel imaging technologies provide an opportunity to probe these higher order structures in their native state. If cell walls are to be efficiently deconstructed enzymatically to release fermentable sugars, then we require a detailed understanding of their structural organization in future bioenergy crops.


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