Inositol Pyrophosphate Pathways and Mechanisms: What Can We Learn from Plants?
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The ability of an organism to maintain homeostasis in changing conditions is crucial for growth and survival. Eukaryotes have developed complex signaling pathways to adapt to a readily changing environment, including the inositol phosphate (InsP) signaling pathway. In plants and humans the pyrophosphorylated inositol molecules, inositol pyrophosphates (PP-InsPs), have been implicated in phosphate and energy sensing. PP-InsPs are synthesized from the phosphorylation of InsP6, the most abundant InsP. The plant PP-InsP synthesis pathway is similar but distinct from that of the human, which may reflect differences in how molecules such as Ins(1,4,5)P3 and InsP6 function in plants vs. animals. In addition, PP-InsPs can potentially interact with several major signaling proteins in plants, suggesting PP-InsPs play unique signaling roles via binding to protein partners. In this review, we will compare the biosynthesis and role of PP-InsPs in animals and plants, focusing on three central themes: InsP6 synthesis pathways, synthesis and regulation of the PP-InsPs, and function of a specific protein domain called the Syg1, Pho1, Xpr1 (SPX ) domain in binding PP-InsPs and regulating inorganic phosphate (Pi) sensing. This review will provide novel insights into the biosynthetic pathway and bioactivity of these key signaling molecules in plant and human systems.