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Agriculture is an indispensable part of every person’s life, ensuring that nutritious and inexpensive food is readily available. As any other organisms, plants are subject to numerous parasitic infections. Biological evolution has allowed plants to produce a variety of toxic compounds to deal with their pathogens. American pokeweed plant (Phytolacca americana) manufactures pokeweed antiviral protein, a ribosome inactivating protein that disrupts protein synthesis and lowers infectivity of many plant and animal viruses. The intricate mechanism of PAP antiviral activity entails a delicate coordination and interplay of several factors, allowing the plant to battle its invaders. Here, we examine the molecular mechanism of this plant peptide, and describe a molecular model of pokeweed’s antiviral activity.


This article was originally published in Biochemistry & Pharmacology, available at doi:10.4172/2167-0501.1000210.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.

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