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The post-translational lipid modifications N-myristoylation, prenylation and S-acylation are traditionally associated with increasing protein membrane affinity. However this is an over-simplification, with evidence now implicating these modifications in a variety of roles such as membrane microdomain partitioning, protein trafficking, protein complex assembly and polarity maintenance. Evidence for a regulatory role is also emerging, with changes or manipulation of lipid modifications offering a means of directly controlling various aspects of protein function. Proteomics advances have revealed an enrichment of signalling proteins in the lipid-modified proteome, potentially indicating an important role for these modifications in responding to stimuli. This review highlights some of the key themes and possible functions of lipid modification during signalling processes in plants.
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