Assessing the function of the plant nuclear pore complex and the search for specificity.
Plant cells encounter a wide variety of molecules that influence their gene expression and development. A key component of most signal transduction pathways involves the regulated movement of molecules into and out of the nucleus. The plant nuclear pore complex (NPC) is a critical controlling element in this nucleocytoplasmic movement of protein and RNA. The NPC is comprised of approximately 30 nucleoporin proteins arranged in radial symmetry around the central pore. Over recent years our understanding of how the NPC impacts different signalling pathways has increased following the identification of a range of nucleoporin mutant plants. These mutants allow us to gain insight into how the response to hormonal, abiotic, and biotic stresses are effected by changes in nuclear transport. Importantly we have little information regarding the specific molecules whose nuclear transport is altered in these processes and the identification of these proteins is a significant challenge. Here is presented an overview as to how the members of the plant NPC affect signalling pathways, highlighting the progress and difficulties within this research area.