Recent publications


Accossato, S., Kessler F*., Shanmugabalaji V*. (2020) SUMOylation contributes to proteostasis of the chloroplast protein import receptor TOC159 during early development. Elife. 9:e60968.

Sattari Vayghan, H., Tavalaei, S., Grillon, A., Meyer, L., Ballabani, G., Glauser, G., & Longoni, P. (2020). Growth temperature influence on lipids and photosynthesis in Lepidium sativum. Frontiers in Plant Science 11, 745.

Pralon, T., Collombat, J., Pipitone, R., Ksas, B., Shanmugabalaji, V., Havaux, M., ... & Kessler, F. (2020). Mutation of the Atypical Kinase ABC1K3 Partially Rescues the PROTON GRADIENT REGULATION 6 Phenotype in Arabidopsis thaliana. Frontiers in Plant Science 11, 337.

V. Shanmugabalaji, B. Grimm, F. Kessler. (2020) Characterization of a Plastoglobule-Localized SOUL4 Heme Binding Protein in Arabidopsis thaliana. Frontiers in Plant Science 11, 2.


Kessler F, Longoni P. How chloroplasts protect themselves from unfolded proteins. Elife. 2019;8:e51430. doi:10.7554/eLife.51430

Longoni, P., Samol, I., & Goldschmidt-Clermont, M. (2019). The kinase STATE TRANSITION 8 phosphorylates Light Harvesting Complex II and contributes to light acclimation in Arabidopsis thaliana. Frontiers in Plant Science, 10, 1156.

Pralon T., Shanmugabalaji V., Longoni P., Glauser G., Ksas B., Collombat J., Desmeules S., Havaux M., Finazzi, G & Kessler, F. (2019). Plastoquinone homoeostasis by Arabidopsis proton gradient regulation 6 is essential for photosynthetic efficiency Communications Biology volume 2, Article number: 220

Shanmugabalaji, V., & Kessler, F. (2019). CHLORAD: Eradicating Translocon Components from the Outer Membrane of the Chloroplast. Molecular plant, 12(4), 467-469.



Shanmugabalaji, V., Douet, V., Agne, B., & Kessler, F. (2018). Affinity Purification of Chloroplast Translocon Protein Complexes Using the TAP Tag. JoVE (Journal of Visualized Experiments), (141), e58532.

Shanmugabalaji, V., Chahtane, H., Accossato, S., Rahire, M., Gouzerh, G., Lopez-Molina, L., and Kessler, F. (2018) Chloroplast biogenesis controlled by DELLA-TOC159 interaction in early plant development. Curr. Biol. 28, 1-8. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.06.006

Schreier, T.B., Cléry, A., Schläfli, M., Galbier, F., Stadler, M., Demarsy, E., Albertine, D., Maier, B.A., Kessler, F., Hörtensteiner, S., Zeeman, S.C., and Kötting, O. (2018) Plant Cell 30, 1745-1769.doi: 10.1105/tpc.18.00121



Spicher, L., Almeida, J., Gutbrod, K., Pipitone, R., Dörmann, P., Glauser, G., Rossi, M., and Kessler F. Essential role for phytol kinase and tocopherol in tolerance to combined light and temperature stress in tomato. (2017) J. Exp. Bot. 68, 5845-5856. doi: 10.1093/jxb/erx356.

Zufferey, M., Montandon, C., Douet, V., Demarsy, E., Agne, B., Baginsky, S., and Kessler, F. (2017). The novel chloroplast outer membrane kinase KOC1 is a required component of the plastid protein import machinery. J. Biol. Chem. 292, 6952-6964. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M117.776468.

van Wijk, K. J., and Kessler, F. (2017). Plastoglobuli: Plastid microcompartments with integrated functions in metabolism, plastid developmental transitions, and environmental adaptation. Annu. Rev. Plant Biol. 68, 253-289. doi:10.1146/annurev-arplant-043015-111737.



Rottet, S., Devillers, J., Glauser, G., Douet, V., Besagni, C., and Kessler, F. (2016). Identification of plastoglobules as a site of carotenoid cleavage. Front. Plant Sci. 7. doi:10.3389/fpls.2016.01855.

Spicher L, Glauser G, Kessler F. (2016) “Lipid antioxidant and galactolipid remodeling under temperature stress in tomato plants.”  Front Plant Sci. , 7:1-12.

Almeida J, Azevedo Mda S, Spicher L, Glauser G, vom Dorp K, Guyer L, del Valle Carranza A, Asis R, de Souza AP, Buckeridge M, Demarco D, Bres C, Rothan C, Peres LE, Hörtensteiner S, Kessler F, Dörmann P, Carrari F, Rossi M. (2016) " Down-regulation of tomato PHYTOL KINASE strongly impairs tocopherol biosynthesis and affects prenyllipid metabolism in an organ-specific manner. "  J Exp Bot. ,  67(3):919-34.



Spicher L, Kessler F. (2015) “Unexpected roles of plastoglobules (plastid lipid droplets) in vitamin K1 and E metabolism.” Curr Opin Plant Biol. , 25:123-9.

Rottet S, Besagni C, Kessler F. (2015) “The role of plastoglobules in thylakoid lipid remodeling during plant development.” Biochim Biophys Acta. ,1847(9):889-99.

Köhler D, Montandon C, Hause G, Majovsky P, Kessler F, Baginsky S, Agne B. (2015) “Characterization of chloroplast protein import without Tic56, a component of the 1-megadalton translocon at the inner envelope membrane of chloroplasts.” Plant Physiol. ,167(3):972-90.



Kessler F, Glauser G. (2014) “Prenylquinone profiling in whole leaves and chloroplast subfractions.” Methods Mol Biol. , 1153:213-26.

Demarsy E, Lakshmanan AM, Kessler F. (2014) “Border control: selectivity of chloroplast protein import and regulation at the TOC-complex.” Front Plant Sci. , 5:483.

Eugeni Piller L, Glauser G, Kessler F, Besagni C. (2014) “ Role of plastoglobules in metabolite repair in the tocopherol redox cycle. ” Front Plant Sci. , 5:298.

Martinis J, Glauser G, Valimareanu S, Stettler M, Zeeman SC, Yamamoto H, Shikanai T, Kessler F. (2014). " ABC1K1/PGR6 kinase: a regulatory link between photosynthetic activity and chloroplast metabolism. " Plant J. , 77(2):269-283

Shanmugabalaji, V. and Kessler, F. (2014). Gradient Flotation Centrifugation of Chloroplast Membranes. Bio-protocol 4(17): e1230.



Martinis J, Glauser G, Valimareanu S, Kessler F. (2013) " A chloroplast ABC1-like kinase regulates vitamin E metabolism in Arabidopsis. " Plant Physiol. ,162(2):652-62.

Besagni C and Kessler, F. (2013). "A mechanism implicating plastoglobules in thylakoid disassembly during senescence and nitrogen starvation." Planta 237, 463-470.

Shanmugabalaji V, Besagni C, Piller L.E, Douet  V, Ruf S, Bock R, and Kessler F. (2013). "Dual targeting of a mature plastoglobulin/fibrillin fusion protein to chloroplast plastoglobules and thylakoids in transplastomic tobacco plants." Plant Mol Biol. , 81, 13-25.



Kessler F. (2012). "Plant science. Chloroplast delivery by UPS. " Science 338, 622-623.

Eugeni Piller, L, Abraham M, Dormann P, Kessler F, and Besagni C. (2012). " Plastid lipid droplets at the crossroads of prenylquinone metabolism. " J Exp Bot 63, 1609-1618.  

Lippold F, vom Dorp K, Abraham M, Holzl G, Wewer V, Yilmaz J.L, Lager I, Montandon C, Besagni C, Kessler F. Stymne S, Dörmann P. (2012). "Fatty acid phytyl ester synthesis in chloroplasts of Arabidopsis."   Plant Cell 24, 2001-2014.

Sakuraba Y, Schelbert S, Park S.Y, Han S.H, Lee B.D, Andres C.B, Kessler F, Hortensteiner S, and Paek N.C. (2012). "STAY-GREEN and chlorophyll catabolic enzymes interact at light-harvesting complex II for chlorophyll detoxification during leaf senescence in Arabidopsis."   Plant Cell 24, 507-518.





Publications before 2012


Bischof S, Baerenfaller K, Wildhaber T, Troesch R, Vidi P.A, Roschitzki B, Hirsch-Hoffmann M, Hennig L, Kessler F, Gruissem W, Baginsky S, (2011). "Plastid proteome assembly without Toc159: photosynthetic protein import and accumulation of N-acetylated plastid precursor proteins. " Plant Cell 23, 3911-3928. Link ///


Infanger S, Bischof S, Hiltbrunner A, Agne B, Baginsky S, and Kessler F. (2011). "The chloroplast

import receptor Toc90 partially restores the accumulation of Toc159 client proteins in the

Arabidopsis thaliana ppi2 mutant. " Mol Plant 4, 252-263. Link ///


Martinis J, Kessler F, Glauser G. (2011) "A novel method for prenylquinone profiling in plant tissues by ultra-high pressure liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. Plant Methods ., 21;7(1):23. Link ///


Eugeni Piller L, Besagni C, Ksas B, Rumeau D, Brehelin C, Glauser G, Kessler F and Havaux M. (2011). "Chloroplast lipid droplet type II NAD(P)H quinone oxidoreductase is essential for prenylquinone metabolism and vitamin K1 accumulation. " Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 108, 14354-14359.   Link ///



Zbierzak A.M, Kanwischer M, Wille C, Vidi P.A, Giavalisco P, Lohmann A, Briesen I, Porfirova S, Brehelin C, Kessler F, Dörmann P. (2010). " Intersection of the tocopherol and plastoquinol metabolic pathways at the plastoglobule. " Biochem J 425, 389-399. Link ///


Shapiguzov A, Ingelsson B, Samol I, Andres C, Kessler F, Rochaix J.D, Vener A.V and Goldschmidt-Clermont M. (2010). "The PPH1 phosphatase is specifically involved in LHCII dephosphorylation and state transitions in Arabidopsis. "   Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 107, 4782-4787. Link ///


Agne B, Andres C, Montandon C, Christ B, Ertan A, Jung F, Infanger S, Bischof S, Baginsky, S and Kessler F.(2010). "The acidic A-domain of Arabidopsis TOC159 occurs as a hyperphosphorylated protein. " Plant Physiol 153, 1016-1030. Link ///


Agne B and Kessler F. (2010). "Modifications at the A-domain of the chloroplast import receptor Toc159." Plant Signal Behav 5, 1513-1516. Link ///


Andres C, Agne B and Kessler F. (2010). " The TOC complex: preprotein gateway to the chloroplast. " Biochim Biophys Acta 1803, 715-723. Link ///


Aronsson H, Combe J, Patel R, Agne B, Martin M, Kessler F and Jarvis P. (2010). "Nucleotide binding and dimerization at the chloroplast pre-protein import receptor, atToc33, are not essential in vivo but do increase import efficiency." Plant J 63, 297-311 Link ///



Kessler F and Schnell D. (2009). "Chloroplast biogenesis: diversity and regulation of the protein import apparatus. " Curr Opin Cell Biol 21, 494-500. Link ///


Agne B, Infanger S, Wang F, Hofstetter V, Rahim G, Martin M, Lee D.W., Wang I, Schnell D and Kessler F. (2009). " A TOC159 import receptor mutant, defective in hydrolysis of GTP, supports preprotein import into chloroplasts." J Biol Chem. 284(13):8670-9 Link ///


Agne B and Kessler F. (2009). " Protein transport in organelles: The Toc complex way of preprotein import. " FEBS J.,276(5):1156-65 Link ///


Schelbert S, Aubry S, Burla B, Agne B, Kessler F, Krupinska K and Hortensteiner S. (2009). "Pheophytin pheophorbide hydrolase (pheophytinase) is involved in chlorophyll breakdown during leaf senescence in Arabidopsis. "   Plant Cell 21, 767-785. Link ///


Meskauskiene R, Wursch M, Laloi  C, Vidi P.A., Coll N.S., Kessler F., Baruah A., Kim C and Apel K. (2009). " A mutation in the Arabidopsis mTERF-related plastid protein SOLDAT10 activates retrograde signaling and suppresses (1)O(2)-induced cell death. "   Plant J 60, 399-410. Link ///



Brehelin C and Kessler F. (2008). " The plastoglobule: a bag full of lipid biochemistry tricks. " Photochem Photobiol 84(6): 1388-94. Link ///


Rahim G, Bischof S, Kessler F and Agne B. (2008). " In vivo interaction between atToc33 and atToc159 GTP-binding domains demonstrated in a plant split-ubiquitin system. " J Exp Bot. 60(1):257-67 Link ///


Wang F, Agne B, Kessler F and Schnell D.J. (2008). " The role of GTP binding and hydrolysis at the atToc159 preprotein receptor during protein import into chloroplasts. " J Cell Biol 183(1): 87-99. Link ///



Agne  B and Kessler F. (2007). “Protein import into plastids” . Cell and Molecular Biology of Plastids : 339-370.


Gaude N, Brehelin C, Tischendorf G, Kessler F and Dormann P. (2007). " Nitrogen deficiency in Arabidopsis affects galactolipid composition and gene expression and results in accumulation of fatty acid phytyl esters. " Plant J 49(4): 729-39. Link ///


Kessler F and Vidi P.A. (2007). " Plastoglobule lipid bodies: their functions in chloroplasts and their potential for applications. " Adv Biochem Eng Biotechnol 107: 153-72. Link ///   


Vidi P. A, Kessler F and Brehelin C. (2007). " Plastoglobules: a new address for targeting recombinant proteins in the chloroplast. " BMC Biotechnol 7: 4. Link ///


Brehelin C, Kessler F and van Wijk K. J. (2007). " Plastoglobules: versatile lipoprotein particles in plastids. " Trends Plant Sci 12(6): 260-6. Link ///



Kessler F. and Schnell D. J. (2006). " The function and diversity of plastid protein import pathways: a multilane GTPase highway into plastids. " Traffic 7(3): 248-57. Link ///


Austin J. R. 2nd, Frost E, Vidi P. A., Kessler F and Staehelin L. A. (2006). " Plastoglobules are lipoprotein subcompartments of the chloroplast that are permanently coupled to thylakoid membranes and contain biosynthetic enzymes. " Plant Cell 18(7): 1693-703. Link ///  


Lohmann A, Schottler M. A., Brehelin C, Kessler F, Bock R, Cahoon E. B. and Dormann P. (2006). "Deficiency in phylloquinone (vitamin K1) methylation affects prenyl quinone distribution, photosystem I abundance, and anthocyanin accumulation in the Arabidopsis AtmenG mutant. " J Biol Chem 281(52): 40461-72. Link ///    


Vidi P. A., Kanwischer M, Baginsky S, Austin J. R., Csucs G, Dormann P, Kessler F and Brehelin C. (2006). " Tocopherol cyclase (VTE1) localization and vitamin E accumulation in chloroplast plastoglobule lipoprotein particles. " J Biol Chem 281(16): 11225-34. Link ///



Inaba T, Alvarez-Huerta M, Li M, Bauer J, Ewers C, Kessler F and Schnell D. J. (2005). "Arabidopsis tic110 is essential for the assembly and function of the protein import machinery of plastids. " Plant Cell 17(5): 1482-96. Link ///



Kessler F and Schnell D. J. (2004). " Chloroplast protein import: solve the GTPase riddle for entry. " Trends Cell Biol 14(7): 334-8. Link ///



Inaba T, Li M, Alvarez-Huerta M, Kessler F and Schnell D. J. (2003). " atTic110 functions as a scaffold for coordinating the stromal events of protein import into chloroplasts. " J Biol Chem 278(40): 38617-27. Link ///



Bauer J, Hiltbrunner A, Weibel P, Vidi P. A, Alvarez-Huerta M, Smith M. D, Schnell D. J. and Kessler F. (2002). " Essential role of the G-domain in targeting of the protein import receptor atToc159 to the chloroplast outer membrane. " J Cell Biol 159(5): 845-54. Link ///


Kessler F and D. J. Schnell (2002). " A GTPase gate for protein import into chloroplasts. " Nat Struct Biol 9(2): 81-3. Link ///


Smith M, Hiltbrunner D.A., Kessler F and Schnell D.J. (2002). " The targeting of the atToc159 preprotein receptor to the chloroplast outer membrane is mediated by its GTPase domain and is regulated by GTP. " J Cell Biol 159(5): 833-43. Link ///



Hiltbrunner A, Bauer J, Vidi P. A., Infanger S, Weibel P, Hohwy M and Kessler F. (2001). " Targeting of an abundant cytosolic form of the protein import receptor at Toc159 to the outer chloroplast membrane. " J Cell Biol 154(2): 309-16. Link ///


Meskauskiene R, Nater M, Goslings D, Kessler F, op den Camp R, Apel K. (2001). FLU: a negative regulator of chlorophyll biosynthesis in Arabidopsis thaliana. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 98:12826-12831. Link ///


Bischoff M, Schaller A, Bieri F, Kessler F, Amrhein N and Schmid J. (2001).“Molecular characterization of tomato 3-dehydroquinate dehydratase-shikimate:NADP-oxidoreductase.“ Plant Physiol. 125:1891-1900. Link ///



Bauer J, Chen K, Hiltbunner A, Wehrli E, Eugster M, Schnell D and Kessler F. (2000). " The major protein import receptor of plastids is essential for chloroplast biogenesis. " Nature 403(6766): 203-7. Link ///



Kessler F, Schnell D and Blobel G. (1999). " Identification of proteins associated with plastoglobules isolated from pea (Pisum sativum L.) chloroplasts ." Planta 208(1): 107-13. Link ///



Schnell D.J., Blobel G, Keegstra K, Kessler F, Ko K and Soll J. (1997) " A consensus nomenclature for the protein-import components of the chloroplast envelope ." Trends Cell Biol 7(8): 303-4. Link ///



Kessler F, Blobel G, Patel H. A. and Schnell D. J. (1994). " Identification of two GTP-binding proteins in the chloroplast protein import machinery. " Science 266(5187): 1035-9. Link ///


Schnell D. J, Kessler F and Blobel G. (1994). " Isolation of components of the chloroplast protein import machinery ." Science 266(5187): 1007-12. Link ///