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© 2020 Elsevier Inc. The cell walls of plants and microbes are a central source for bio-renewable energy and the major targets of antibiotics and antifungal agents. It is highly challenging to determine the molecular structure of complex carbohydrates, protein and lignin, and their supramolecular assembly in intact cell walls. This article selectively highlights the recent breakthroughs that employ 13C/15N solid-state NMR techniques to elucidate the architecture of fungal cell walls in Aspergillus fumigatus and the primary and secondary cell walls in a large variety of plant species such as Arabidopsis, Brachypodium, maize, and spruce. Built upon these pioneering studies, we further summarize the underexplored aspects of fungal and plant cell walls. The new research opportunities introduced by innovative methods, such as the detection of proton and quadrupolar nuclei on ultrahigh-field magnets and under fast magic-angle spinning, paramagnetic probes, natural-abundance DNP, and software development, are also critically discussed.

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Solid State Nuclear Magnetic Resonance