The proliferation of research in this area has unfortunately also led to the adoption of many overlapping and contradictory nomenclatures and classifications for the same sets of genes/proteins. Some XET/EXGT genes have been assigned more than one name in the public databases. Now that the genomes of a monocotyledon (Oryza sativa) and a dicotyledon (Arabidopsis thaliana) have been sequenced and the extensive nature of this class of genes has been revealed, this seems an appropriate time to develop a systematic and logical approach to naming new and existing XET/EXGT genes. This will become increasingly important as the databases expand and additional large-scale plant genome sequencing initiatives progress.
A standardized nomenclature is urgently needed. A consensus has been reached that a member of this class of genes/proteins should be termed a xyloglucan endotransglucosylase-hydrolase (XTH) (Rose et al. 2002). This name was selected to accurately describe the range of enzymatic activities encoded by divergent family members, the specificity of the substrate, and the identity of the glycosyl residues (glucose) that are covalently linked during the transglycosylation reaction. The adoption of a three-letter mnemonic also conforms to the convention for naming gene families.
We propose the following:
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