Ethanolic fermentation: new functions for an old pathway

Tadege, Million; Dupuis, Isabelle; Kuhlemeier, Cris (1999). Ethanolic fermentation: new functions for an old pathway. Trends in Plant Science, 4(8), 320 - 325. Elsevier Current Trends 10.1016/S1360-1385(99)01450-8

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Ethanolic fermentation is an ancient metabolic pathway. In plants, it is a major route of {ATP} production under anaerobic conditions. In addition, recent developments suggest that the pathway has important functions in the presence of oxygen. Both of the enzymes required for the production of acetaldehyde and ethanol, pyruvate decarboxylase and alcohol dehydrogenase, are highly abundant in pollen, resulting in fermentation in fully oxygenated cells. Acetaldehyde toxicity is an inevitable side effect of aerobic fermentation. Could acetaldehyde be the elusive pollen factor that contributes to male sterility in cmsT maize? The versatility of this ancient pathway is also illustrated by the induction of aerobic fermentation by environmental stress and activation of a defense response by overexpression of pyruvate decarboxylase.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS) > Plant Development
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS)

UniBE Contributor:

Kuhlemeier, Cris


500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)




Elsevier Current Trends




Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

02 Jun 2016 12:00

Last Modified:

02 Jun 2016 12:00

Publisher DOI:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Aerobic fermentation, Acetaldehyde, Aldehyde, Dehydrogenase, Stress response, Pyruvate decarboxylase




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