Cell elongation in plants requires addition and re-arrangements of cell wall components. Even if some protein families have been shown to play roles in these events, a global picture of proteins present in cell walls of elongating cells is still missing. A proteomic study was performed on etiolated hypocotyls of Arabidopsis used as model of cells undergoing elongation followed by growth arrest within a short time.
Two developmental stages (active growth and after growth arrest) were compared. A new strategy consisting of high performance cation exchange chromatography and mono-dimensional electrophoresis was established for separation of cell wall proteins. This work allowed identification of 137 predicted secreted proteins, among which 51 had not been identified previously. Apart from expected proteins known to be involved in cell wall extension such as xyloglucan endotransglucosylase-hydrolases, expansins, polygalacturonases, pectin methylesterases and peroxidases, new proteins were identified such as proteases, proteins related to lipid metabolism and proteins of unknown function.
This work highlights the CWP dynamics that takes place between the two developmental stages. The presence of proteins known to be related to cell wall extension after growth arrest showed that these proteins may play other roles in cell walls. Finally, putative regulatory mechanisms of protein biological activity are discussed from this global view of cell wall proteins.
Background and Aims
Hypocotyls are a commonly used model to study primary growth in plants, since post-germinative hypocotyls increase in size by cell elongation rather than cell division. Flax hypocotyls produce phloem fibres in bundles one to two cell layers thick, parallel to the protoxylem poles of the stele. Cell wall deposition within these cells occurs rapidly at a well-defined stage of development. The aim was to identify transcripts associated with distinct stages of hypocotyl and phloem fibre development.
Stages of flax hypocotyl development were defined by analysing hypocotyl length in relation to fibre secondary wall deposition. Selected stages of development were used in microarray analyses to identify transcripts involved in the transition from elongation to secondary cell wall deposition in fibres. Expression of specific genes was confirmed by qRT-PCR and by enzymatic assays.
Genes enriched in the elongation phase included transcripts related to cell-wall modification or primary-wall deposition. Transcripts specifically enriched at the transition between elongation and secondary wall deposition included β-galactosidase and arabinogalactan proteins. Later stages of wall development showed an increase in secondary metabolism-related transcripts, chitinases and glycosyl hydrolases including KORRIGAN. Microarray analysis also identified groups of transcription factors enriched at one or more stages of fibre development. Subsequent analysis of a differentially expressed β-galactosidase confirmed that the post-elongation increase in β-galactosidase enzyme activity was localized to phloem fibres.
Transcripts were identified associated with specific stages of hypocotyl development, in which phloem fibre cells were undergoing thickening of secondary walls. Temporal and spatial regulation of β-galactosidase activity suggests a role for this enzyme in remodelling of flax bast fibre cell walls during secondary cell wall deposition.
Bast; fibre; flax; hypocotyl; Linum usitatissimum; phloem; microarray; galactosidase
The disulfated peptide growth factor phytosulfokine-α (PSK-α) is perceived by LRR receptor kinases. In this study, a role for PSK signaling through PSK receptor PSKR1 in Arabidopsis thaliana hypocotyl cell elongation is established. Hypocotyls of etiolated pskr1-2 and pskr1-3 seedlings, but not of pskr2-1 seedlings were shorter than wt due to reduced cell elongation. Treatment with PSK-α did not promote hypocotyl growth indicating that PSK levels were saturating. Tyrosylprotein sulfotransferase (TPST) is responsible for sulfation and hence activation of the PSK precursor. The tpst-1 mutant displayed shorter hypocotyls with shorter cells than wt. Treatment of tpst-1 seedlings with PSK-α partially restored elongation growth in a dose-dependent manner. Hypocotyl elongation was significantly enhanced in tpst-1 seedlings at nanomolar PSK-α concentrations. Cell expansion was studied in hypocotyl protoplasts. WT and pskr2-1 protoplasts expanded in the presence of PSK-α in a dose-dependent manner. By contrast, pskr1-2 and pskr1-3 protoplasts were unresponsive to PSK-α. Protoplast swelling in response to PSK-α was unaffected by ortho-vanadate, which inhibits the plasma membrane H+-ATPase. In maize (Zea mays L.), coleoptile protoplast expansion was similarly induced by PSK-α in a dose-dependent manner and was dependent on the presence of K+ in the media. In conclusion, PSK-α signaling of hypocotyl elongation and protoplast expansion occurs through PSKR1 and likely involves K+ uptake, but does not require extracellular acidification by the plasma membrane H+-ATPase.
Many processes critical to plant growth and development are regulated by the hormone auxin. Auxin responses are initiated through activation of a transcriptional response mediated by the TIR1/AFB family of F-box protein auxin receptors as well as the AUX/IAA and ARF families of transcriptional regulators. However, there is little information on how auxin regulates a specific cellular response. To begin to address this question, we have focused on auxin regulation of cell expansion in the Arabidopsis hypocotyl. We show that auxin-mediated hypocotyl elongation is dependent upon the TIR1/AFB family of auxin receptors and degradation of AUX/IAA repressors. We also use microarray studies of elongating hypocotyls to show that a number of growth-associated processes are activated by auxin including gibberellin biosynthesis, cell wall reorganization and biogenesis, and others. Our studies indicate that GA biosynthesis is required for normal response to auxin in the hypocotyl but that the overall transcriptional auxin output consists of PIF-dependent and -independent genes. We propose that auxin acts independently from and interdependently with PIF and GA pathways to regulate expression of growth-associated genes in cell expansion.
Different strategies (genetics, biochemistry, and proteomics) can be used to study proteins involved in cell biogenesis. The availability of the complete sequences of several plant genomes allowed the development of transcriptomic studies. Although the expression patterns of some Arabidopsis thaliana genes involved in cell wall biogenesis were identified at different physiological stages, detailed microarray analysis of plant cell wall genes has not been performed on any plant tissues. Using transcriptomic and bioinformatic tools, we studied the regulation of cell wall genes in Arabidopsis stems, i.e. genes encoding proteins involved in cell wall biogenesis and genes encoding secreted proteins.
Transcriptomic analyses of stems were performed at three different developmental stages, i.e., young stems, intermediate stage, and mature stems. Many genes involved in the synthesis of cell wall components such as polysaccharides and monolignols were identified. A total of 345 genes encoding predicted secreted proteins with moderate or high level of transcripts were analyzed in details. The encoded proteins were distributed into 8 classes, based on the presence of predicted functional domains. Proteins acting on carbohydrates and proteins of unknown function constituted the two most abundant classes. Other proteins were proteases, oxido-reductases, proteins with interacting domains, proteins involved in signalling, and structural proteins. Particularly high levels of expression were established for genes encoding pectin methylesterases, germin-like proteins, arabinogalactan proteins, fasciclin-like arabinogalactan proteins, and structural proteins. Finally, the results of this transcriptomic analyses were compared with those obtained through a cell wall proteomic analysis from the same material. Only a small proportion of genes identified by previous proteomic analyses were identified by transcriptomics. Conversely, only a few proteins encoded by genes having moderate or high level of transcripts were identified by proteomics.
Analysis of the genes predicted to encode cell wall proteins revealed that about 345 genes had moderate or high levels of transcripts. Among them, we identified many new genes possibly involved in cell wall biogenesis. The discrepancies observed between results of this transcriptomic study and a previous proteomic study on the same material revealed post-transcriptional mechanisms of regulation of expression of genes encoding cell wall proteins.
Cell elongation is mainly limited by the extensibility of the cell wall. Dicotyledonous primary (growing) cell walls contain cellulose, xyloglucan, pectin and proteins, but little is known about how each polymer class contributes to the cell wall mechanical properties that control extensibility.
We present evidence that the degree of pectin methyl-esterification (DE%) limits cell growth, and that a minimum level of about 60% DE is required for normal cell elongation in Arabidopsis hypocotyls. When the average DE% falls below this level, as in two gibberellic acid (GA) mutants ga1-3 and gai, and plants expressing pectin methyl-esterase (PME1) from Aspergillus aculeatus, then hypocotyl elongation is reduced.
Low average levels of pectin DE% are associated with reduced cell elongation, implicating PMEs, the enzymes that regulate DE%, in the cell elongation process and in responses to GA. At high average DE% other components of the cell wall limit GA-induced growth.
Despite the economic importance of grasses as food, feed, and energy crops, little is known about the genes that control their cell wall synthesis, assembly, and remodelling. Here a detailed transcriptome analysis that allowed the identification of genes involved in grass cell wall biogenesis is provided. Differential gene expression profiling, using maize oligonucleotide arrays, was used to identify genes differentially expressed between an elongating internode, containing cells exhibiting primary cell wall synthesis, and an internode that had just ceased elongation and in which many cells were depositing secondary cell wall material. This is one of only a few studies specifically aimed at the identification of cell wall-related genes in grasses. Analysis identified new candidate genes for a role in primary and secondary cell wall biogenesis in grasses. The results suggest that many proteins involved in cell wall processes during normal development are also recruited during defence-related cell wall remodelling events. This work provides a platform for studies in which candidate genes will be functionally tested for involvement in cell wall-related processes, increasing our knowledge of cell wall biogenesis and its regulation in grasses. Since several grasses are currently being developed as lignocellulosic feedstocks for biofuel production, this improved understanding of grass cell wall biogenesis is timely, as it will facilitate the manipulation of traits favourable for sustainable food and biofuel production.
Biofuel; cell wall; defence; grasses; lignocellulose; microarray; Zea mays
Along the root axis of Arabidopsis thaliana, cells pass through different developmental stages. In the apical meristem repeated cycles of division increase the numbers of cells. Upon leaving the meristem, these cells pass the transition zone where they are physiologically and mechanically prepared to undergo subsequent rapid elongation. During the process of elongation epidermal cells increase their length by 300% in a couple of hours. When elongation ceases, the cells acquire their final size, shape and functions (in the differentiation zone). Ethylene administered as its precursor 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) is capable of inhibiting elongation in a concentration-dependent way. Using a microarray analysis, genes and/or processes involved in this elongation arrest are identified.
Using a CATMA-microarray analysis performed on control and 3h ACC-treated roots, 240 differentially expressed genes were identified. Quantitative Real-Time RT-PCR analysis of the 10 most up and down regulated genes combined with literature search confirmed the accurateness of the analysis. This revealed that inhibition of cell elongation is, at least partly, caused by restricting the events that under normal growth conditions initiate elongation and by increasing the processes that normally stop cellular elongation at the end of the elongation/onset of differentiation zone.
ACC interferes with cell elongation in the Arabidopsis thaliana roots by inhibiting cells from entering the elongation process and by immediately stimulating the formation of cross-links in cell wall components, diminishing the remaining elongation capacity. From the analysis of the differentially expressed genes, it becomes clear that many genes identified in this response, are also involved in several other kind of stress responses. This suggests that many responses originate from individual elicitors, but that somewhere in the downstream signaling cascade, these are converged to a ’common pathway’. Furthermore, several potential keyplayers, such as transcription factors and auxin-responsive genes, were identified by the microarray analysis. They await further analysis to reveal their exact role in the control of cell elongation.
ACC; Arabidopsis thaliana; Development; Elongation control; Ethylene; Microarray analysis; Root growth
The pasticcino (pas) mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana are a new class of plant developmental mutants; members of this class show ectopic cell proliferation in cotyledons, extra layers of cells in the hypocotyl, and an abnormal apical meristem. This phenotype is correlated with both cell division and cell elongation defects. There are three complementation groups of pas mutants (pas1, pas2, and pas3, with, respectively 2, 1, and 4 alleles). Here we describe in more detail the pas1-1 allele, which was obtained by insertional mutagenesis. The PAS1 gene has been cloned and characterized; it encodes an immunophilin-like protein similar to the p59 FK506-binding protein (FKBP52). PAS1 is characterized by an FKBP-like domain and three tetratricopeptide repeat units. Although the presence of immunophilins in plants has already been demonstrated, the pas1-1 mutant represents the first inactivation of an FKBP-like gene in plants. PAS1 expression is altered in pas1 mutants and in the pas2 and pas3 mutants. The expression of the PAS1 gene is increased in the presence of cytokinins, a class of phytohormones originally discovered because of their ability to stimulate cell division. These results are of particular relevance as they show for the first time that an FKBP-like protein plays an important role in the control of plant development.
Protein kinase CK2 is a pleitropic Ser/Thr kinase present in all eukaryotes. In order to study the effects of CK2 depletion on plant development, we have recently generated Arabidopsis transgenic plants expressing a CK2α-inactive mutant under the control of an inducible promoter. Our results showed that continuous expression of the transgene had a dominant negative effect and was lethal for Arabidopsis plants. Overexpression of the CK2α-inactive subunit provoked cell cycle arrest, by perturbation of both G1/S and G2 cell cycle phases. The effects on cell division were particularly strong in root meristems, causing inhibition of lateral root formation even when the mutant protein was transiently induced. Processes that rely on cell expansion, such as hypocotyl elongation in dark-grown seedlings, were also strongly affected. We propose that CK2 regulates auxin-signaling pathways.
protein kinase CK2; cell division cycle; cell expansion; lateral roots; auxin
Background and Aims
In hypocotyls of flax (Linum usitatissimum) cadmium-induced reorientation of growth (i.e. an increase in expansion and a decrease in elongation) coincides with marked changes in the methylesterification and cross-linking of homogalacturonans within various cell-wall (CW) domains. The aim of the present study was to examine the involvement of pectin methylesterase (PME) and peroxidase (PER) in this cadmium-induced CW remodelling.
CW proteins were extracted from hypocotyls of 10- and 18-d-old flax that had been treated or not treated with 0·5 mm Cd(NO3)2. PME and PER expression within these extracts was detected by LC/MS, by isoelectric focusing and enzyme activity assays. Transcript expression by RT-PCR of known flax PME and PER genes was also measured in corresponding samples.
In cadmium-treated seedlings, PME activity increased as compared with controls, particularly at day 10. The increased activity of PME was accompanied by increased abundance of both a basic protein isoform (B2) and a particular transcript (Lupme5). In contrast, induction of PER activity by cadmium was highest at day 18. Among the four reported PER genes, Flxper1 and 3 increased in abundance in the presence of cadmium at day 18.
The temporal regulation of Lupme and Flxper genes and of their respective enzyme activities fits the previously reported cadmium-induced structural changes of homogalacturonans within the CWs. After PME-catalysed de-esterification of homogalacturonans, their cross-linking would depend on the activity of PERs interacting with calcium-dimerized blocks and reinforce the cell cohesion during the cadmium-induced swelling.
Cadmium; cell wall; homogalacturonan; Linum usitatissimum; pectin methylesterase; peroxidase
Extracellular ATP (eATP) and nitric oxide (NO) have emerged as crucial players in plant development, stress responses and cell viability. Glutathione (GSH) is an abundant reducing agent with proposed roles in plant growth, development and stress physiology. In a recent publication, we demonstrated that eATP and NO restore hypocotyl elongation of etiolated Arabidopsis seedlings treated with GSH. Here it is reported that exogenous ATP also restores root hair growth suggesting a role for ATP and NO in the regulation of redox balance associated to specific processes of plant morphogenesis. A tentative model integrating redox-, eATP- and NO-signaling pathways during root hair growth in Arabidopsis seedlings is presented.
Arabidopsis thaliana; extracellular ATP signaling; nitric oxide; redox system; root hair
Shade avoidance is an ecologically and molecularly well-understood set of plant developmental responses that occur when the ratio of red to far-red light (R∶FR) is reduced as a result of foliar shade. Here, a genome-wide association study (GWAS) in Arabidopsis thaliana was used to identify variants underlying one of these responses: increased hypocotyl elongation. Four hypocotyl phenotypes were included in the study, including height in high R∶FR conditions (simulated sun), height in low R∶FR conditions (simulated shade), and two different indices of the response of height to low R∶FR. GWAS results showed that variation in these traits is controlled by many loci of small to moderate effect. A known PHYC variant contributing to hypocotyl height variation was identified and lists of significantly associated genes were enriched in a priori candidates, suggesting that this GWAS was capable of generating meaningful results. Using metadata such as expression data, GO terms, and other annotation, we were also able to identify variants in candidate de novo genes. Patterns of significance among our four phenotypes allowed us to categorize associations into three groups: those that affected hypocotyl height without influencing shade avoidance, those that affected shade avoidance in a height-dependent fashion, and those that exerted specific control over shade avoidance. This grouping allowed for the development of explicit hypotheses about the genetics underlying shade avoidance variation. Additionally, the response to shade did not exhibit any marked geographic distribution, suggesting that variation in low R∶FR–induced hypocotyl elongation may represent a response to local conditions.
The goal of this work was to identify genetic variants underlying a well-characterized environmental response, the elongation of Arabidopsis thaliana hypocotyls (seedling stems) in response to shade, otherwise known as shade avoidance. We performed a genome-wide association study with four phenotypes: absolute hypocotyl height of plants grown in both simulated sun and shade and two measures of how height responded to shade. With this study, we confirmed previous findings that variants in two photoreceptors were associated with hypocotyl height variation. We also found associations with genetic variants in previously-identified shade avoidance genes, as well as with variants in genes not typically considered part of the shade avoidance pathway. By examining patterns of which of the four phenotypes were associated with each gene, we were then able to discriminate between genetic variants that have a general role in hypocotyl height variation and variants that are specifically involved in the shade avoidance response. We also found that shade avoidance was not broadly associated with geography, suggesting that variation in this trait may be due to local differences in light quality.
Most organisms use daily light/dark cycles as timing cues to control many essential physiological processes. In plants, growth rates of the embryonic stem (hypocotyl) are maximal at different times of day, depending on external photoperiod and the internal circadian clock. However, the interactions between light signaling, the circadian clock, and growth-promoting hormone pathways in growth control remain poorly understood. At the molecular level, such growth rhythms could be attributed to several different layers of time-specific control such as phasing of transcription, signaling, or protein abundance. To determine the transcriptional component associated with the rhythmic control of growth, we applied temporal analysis of the Arabidopsis thaliana seedling transcriptome under multiple growth conditions and mutant backgrounds using DNA microarrays. We show that a group of plant hormone-associated genes are coexpressed at the time of day when hypocotyl growth rate is maximal. This expression correlates with overrepresentation of a cis-acting element (CACATG) in phytohormone gene promoters, which is sufficient to confer the predicted diurnal and circadian expression patterns in vivo. Using circadian clock and light signaling mutants, we show that both internal coincidence of phytohormone signaling capacity and external coincidence with darkness are required to coordinate wild-type growth. From these data, we argue that the circadian clock indirectly controls growth by permissive gating of light-mediated phytohormone transcript levels to the proper time of day. This temporal integration of hormone pathways allows plants to fine tune phytohormone responses for seasonal and shade-appropriate growth regulation.
In plants, stems elongate faster at dawn. This time-of-day–specific growth is controlled by integration of environmental cues and the circadian clock. The specific effectors of growth in plants are the phytohormones: auxin, ethylene, gibberellins, abscisic acid, brassinosteroids, and cytokinins. Each phytohormone plays an independent as well as an overlapping role in growth, and understanding the interactions of the phytohormones has dominated plant research over the past century. The authors present a model in which the circadian clock coordinates growth by synchronizing phytohormone gene expression at dawn, allowing a plant to control growth in a condition-specific manner. Furthermore, the results presented provide a new framework for future experiments aimed at understanding the integration and crosstalk of the phytohormones.
Why do plants grow faster at dawn? New results suggest that light and the circadian clock coordinate growth by synchronizing the expression of plant hormone genes at dawn.
The biomechanical behaviour of plant cells depends upon the material properties of their cell walls and, in many cases, it is necessary that these properties are quite specific. Additionally, physiological regulation may require that target cells responding to hormonal signals or environmental factors are able to modulate these characteristics.
This paper uses a rheological analysis of creep of elongating sunflower (Helianthus annuus) sunflower hypocotyls to demonstrate that the mechanical behaviour of plant cell walls is complex and involves multiple layered processes that can be distinguished from one another by the time-scale over which they lead to a change in tissue dimensions, their sensitivity to pH and temperature, and their responses to changes in spatial arrangement of the cell wall brought about by treatment with high Mr PEG. Furthermore, it appears possible to regulate individual rheological processes, with limited effect on others, in order to modulate growth without affecting tissue structural integrity. It is proposed that control of the water content of the cell wall and therefore the space between cell wall polymers may be one mechanism by which differential regulation of cell wall biomechanical properties is achieved. This hypothesis is supported by evidence showing that enzyme extracts from growing tissues can cause swelling in cell wall fragments in suspension.
The physiological implications of this complexity are then considered for growing tissues, stomatal guard cells and abscission cells. It is noted that, in each circumstance, a different combination of mechanical properties is required and that differential regulation of properties affecting behaviour over different time-scales is often necessary.
Helianthus annuus; cell wall; rheology; growth; stomata; abscission
Higher plants adapt their growth to high temperature by a dramatic change in plant architecture. It has been shown that the transcriptional regulator phytochrome-interacting factor 4 (PIF4) and the phytohormone auxin are involved in the regulation of high temperature–induced hypocotyl elongation in Arabidopsis. Here we report that PIF4 regulates high temperature–induced hypocotyl elongation through direct activation of the auxin biosynthetic gene YUCCA8 (YUC8). We show that high temperature co-upregulates the transcript abundance of PIF4 and YUC8. PIF4–dependency of high temperature–mediated induction of YUC8 expression as well as auxin biosynthesis, together with the finding that overexpression of PIF4 leads to increased expression of YUC8 and elevated free IAA levels in planta, suggests a possibility that PIF4 directly activates YUC8 expression. Indeed, gel shift and chromatin immunoprecipitation experiments demonstrate that PIF4 associates with the G-box–containing promoter region of YUC8. Transient expression assay in Nicotiana benthamiana leaves support that PIF4 directly activates YUC8 expression in vivo. Significantly, we show that the yuc8 mutation can largely suppress the long-hypocotyl phenotype of PIF4–overexpression plants and also can reduce high temperature–induced hypocotyl elongation. Genetic analyses reveal that the shy2-2 mutation, which harbors a stabilized mutant form of the IAA3 protein and therefore is defective in high temperature–induced hypocotyl elongation, largely suppresses the long-hypocotyl phenotype of PIF4–overexpression plants. Taken together, our results illuminate a molecular framework by which the PIF4 transcriptional regulator integrates its action into the auxin pathway through activating the expression of specific auxin biosynthetic gene. These studies advance our understanding on the molecular mechanism underlying high temperature–induced adaptation in plant architecture.
Exposure of Arabidopsis to high temperature (29°C) results in a dramatic hypocotyl elongation. The basic helix-loop-helix transcription factor PIF4 and the phytohormone auxin play essential roles in high temperature–mediated induction of Arabidopsis hypocotyl elongation. However, the possible molecular linkage between PIF4 and the auxin pathway in regulating high temperature–induced adaptative growth remains unknown. Here, we report that high temperature–induced elevation of YUCCA8 (YUC8) transcripts and endogenous free IAA levels is dependent on the function of PIF4. In particular, we provide evidence that PIF4 directly activates the expression of YUC8 to upregulate auxin biosynthesis, as a consequence, achieves high temperature–induced hypocotyl elongation. In addition, we found that SHY2/IAA3 is an important component of the PIF4–auxin pathway in regulating high temperature–induced hypocotyl elongation. Overall, our results establish a direct connection between the PIF4 transcription factor and the auxin pathway in regulating high temperature–induced adaptation growth.
Circadian clocks involve feedback loops that generate rhythmic expression of key genes. Molecular genetic studies in the higher plant Arabidopsis thaliana have revealed a complex clock network. The first part of the network to be identified, a transcriptional feedback loop comprising TIMING OF CAB EXPRESSION 1 (TOC1), LATE ELONGATED HYPOCOTYL (LHY) and CIRCADIAN CLOCK ASSOCIATED 1 (CCA1), fails to account for significant experimental data. We develop an extended model that is based upon a wider range of data and accurately predicts additional experimental results. The model comprises interlocking feedback loops comparable to those identified experimentally in other circadian systems. We propose that each loop receives input signals from light, and that each loop includes a hypothetical component that had not been explicitly identified. Analysis of the model predicted the properties of these components, including an acute light induction at dawn that is rapidly repressed by LHY and CCA1. We found this unexpected regulation in RNA levels of the evening-expressed gene GIGANTEA (GI), supporting our proposed network and making GI a strong candidate for this component.
biological rhythms; gene network; mathematical modelling; parameter estimation
Through map-based cloning we determined TRICHOME BIREFRINGENCE (TBR) belongs to a plant-specific, yet anonymous gene family with 46 members in Arabidopsis thaliana. These genes all encode the domain of unknown function 231 (DUF231). TBR and its homolog TRICHOME BIREFRINGENCE-LIKE3 (TBL3) are transcriptionally coordinated with CELLULOSE SYNTHASE (CESA) genes, and loss of TBR or TBL3 results in decreased levels of crystalline secondary wall cellulose in trichomes and stems, respectively. Loss of TBR or TBL3 further results in increased pectin methylesterase (PME) activity and reduced pectin esterification in etiolated Arabidopsis hypocotyls. Together, the results suggest that DUF231 proteins might function in the maintenance of pectin- and probably homogalacturonan esterification, and that this is a requirement for normal secondary wall cellulose synthesis, at least in some tissues and organs. Here we expand the discussion about the role of TBL/DUF231 proteins in cell wall biology based on sequence and structure analyses. Our analysis revealed structural similarities of TBR with a rhamnogalacturonan acetylesterase (RGAE) of Aspergillus aculeatus and the protein LUSTRIN A-LIKE (Oryza sativa). The implications of these findings in regard to TBL functions are discussed.
cellulose; cell wall; pectin; esterase; lustrin A; DUF231; TBL; Arabidopsis
Epigeal germination of a dicot, like lupin (Lupinus albus L.), produces a seedling with a characteristic hypocotyl, which grows in darkness showing a steep growth gradient with an elongation zone just below the apex. The role of phytohormones, such as auxin and ethylene, in etiolated hypocotyl growth has been the object of our research for some time. The recent cloning and expression of three genes of influx and efflux carriers for polar auxin transport (LaAUX1, LaPIN1 and LaPIN3) reinforces a previous model proposed to explain the accumulation of auxin in the upper growth zone of the hypocotyl.
auxin carriers; auxin transport gradient; etiolated hypocotyl growth; Lupinus albus
Arabidopsis, like most plants, exhibits tissue-specific, light-dependent growth responses. Cotyledon and leaf growth and the accumulation of photosynthetic pigments are promoted by light, whereas hypocotyl growth is inhibited. The identification and characterization of distinct phytochrome-dependent molecular effectors that are associated with these divergent tissue-specific, light-dependent growth responses are limited. To identify phytochrome-dependent factors that impact the photoregulation of hypocotyl length, we conducted comparative gene expression studies using Arabidopsis lines exhibiting distinct patterns of phytochrome chromophore inactivation and associated disparate hypocotyl elongation responses under far-red (FR) light. A large number of genes was misregulated in plants lacking mesophyll-specific phytochromes relative to constitutively-deficient phytochrome lines. We identified and characterized genes whose expression is impacted by light and by phyA and phyB that have roles in the photoregulation of hypocotyl length. We characterized the functions of several identified target genes by phenotyping of T-DNA mutants. Among these genes is a previously uncharacterized LHE (LIGHT-INDUCED HYPOCOTYL ELONGATION) gene, which we show impacts light- and phytochrome-mediated regulation of hypocotyl elongation under red (R) and FR illumination. We describe a new approach for identifying genes involved in light- and phytochrome-dependent, tissue-specific growth regulation and confirmed the roles of three such genes in the phytochrome-dependent photoregulation of hypocotyl length.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s11103-013-0029-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
De-etiolation; Phytochrome; Hypocotyl; Photomorphogenesis; Arabidopsis; Development
Arabidopsis thaliana is a model plant used in analysis of different aspects of plant growth and development. Under suitable conditions, secondary growth takes place in the hypocotyl of Arabidopsis plants, a finding which helps in understanding many aspects of xylogenesis. However, not all developmental processes of secondary tissue can be studied here, as no secondary rays and intrusive growth have been detected in hypocotyl. However, results presented here concerning the secondary growth in inflorescence stems of Arabidopsis shows that both secondary rays and intrusive growth of cambial cells can be detected, and that, in the interfascicular regions, a storied cambium can be developed.
Arabidopsis; Cambium; Inflorescence stems; Intrusive growth; Rays; Secondary growth; Storied cambium
The circadian clock is required for adaptive responses to daily and seasonal changes in environmental conditions1-3. Light and the circadian clock interact to consolidate the phase of hypocotyl cell elongation to dawn under diurnal cycles in Arabidopsis thaliana4-7. Here we identify a protein complex (Evening Complex) composed of EARLY FLOWERING 3 (ELF3), EARLY FLOWERING 4 (ELF4) and the transcription factor LUX ARRHYTHMO (LUX) that directly regulates plant growth8-12. ELF3 is both necessary and sufficient to form a complex between ELF4 and LUX, and the complex is diurnally regulated, peaking at dusk. ELF3, ELF4 and LUX are required for the proper expression of the growth-promoting transcription factors PHYTOCHROME-INTERACTING FACTOR 4 (PIF4) and PIF5 under diurnal conditions4,6,13. LUX targets the complex to the promoters of PIF4 and PIF5 in vivo. Mutations in PIF4 and/or PIF5 are epistatic to the loss of the ELF4-ELF3-LUX complex, suggesting that regulation of PIF4 and PIF5 is a critical function of the complex. Therefore, the Evening Complex underlies the molecular basis for circadian gating of hypocotyl growth in the early evening.
It is well accepted that lateral redistribution of the phytohormone auxin underlies the bending of plant organs towards light. In monocots, photoreception occurs at the shoot tip above the region of differential growth. Despite more than a century of research, it is still unresolved how light regulates auxin distribution and where this occurs in dicots. Here, we establish a system in Arabidopsis thaliana to study hypocotyl phototropism in the absence of developmental events associated with seedling photomorphogenesis. We show that auxin redistribution to the epidermal sites of action occurs at and above the hypocotyl apex, not at the elongation zone. Within this region, we identify the auxin efflux transporter ATP-BINDING CASSETTE B19 (ABCB19) as a substrate target for the photoreceptor kinase PHOTOTROPIN 1 (phot1). Heterologous expression and physiological analyses indicate that phosphorylation of ABCB19 by phot1 inhibits its efflux activity, thereby increasing auxin levels in and above the hypocotyl apex to halt vertical growth and prime lateral fluxes that are subsequently channeled to the elongation zone by PIN-FORMED 3 (PIN3). Together, these results provide new insights into the roles of ABCB19 and PIN3 in establishing phototropic curvatures and demonstrate that the proximity of light perception and differential phototropic growth is conserved in angiosperms.
Plants depend on sunlight for photosynthesis and adapt their growth to optimize light capture. Phototropism, the reorientation of growth towards light, is one important adaptive response. Modern studies of phototropism began with experiments in monocotyledonous grasses by Charles Darwin and led ultimately to the discovery of the plant growth hormone auxin, establishing the concept that light perception at the shoot apex triggers differential bending in the tissues below. In the past two decades, molecular-genetic analysis in the model flowering plant Arabidopsis thaliana has identified the principle photoreceptor for phototropism, phot1, as well as the major auxin transporters. Despite extensive efforts, how the photoreceptor regulates auxin transport so as to establish differential growth is still poorly understood, as is whether this process is conserved between monocots and dicots. Here, we introduce a new approach to the study of Arabidopsis phototropism in the absence of developmental events associated with seedling photomorphogenesis. In doing so, we show that the proximity of light perception and differential growth is conserved between monocots and dicots: in both plant types, differential growth is a consequence of lateral auxin movements across the shoot apex. Moreover, we identify two auxin transporters, PIN3 and ABCB19, that contribute to these movements, the latter serving to prime lateral auxin fluxes in the shoot apex. ABCB19 function is regulated by phot1, identifying it as a substrate for this class of photoreceptor kinase.
As research advances acquisition of new data reveals novel aspects on already investigated issues. This is the case for SALT TOLERANCE (STO), an Arabidopsis protein that confers tolerance to high salt concentrations when ectopically expressed in yeast cells. For the last years, STO was considered to participate mainly in the response and tolerance of Arabidopsis to high salinity, as it does in yeast. However, recent investigations using gain- and loss-of-function mutants revealed a major role for STO as negative regulator of photomorphogenesis. Interestingly, and contrary to other negative regulators of light dependent inhibition of hypocotyl elongation, STO protein instability is controlled by COP1 activity in etiolated seedlings. Thus, light stabilizes STO protein levels during de-etiolation. Whether STO participates in other signaling cascades different from light signaling, as it has been shown in yeast and proposed in plants or not, is still an open question.
light-signalling; phytochrome; blue-light; COP1; B-box Zn-finger protein; salt tolerance; yeast
Jasmonates are phytohormones derived from oxygenated fatty acids that regulate a broad range of plant defense and developmental processes. In Arabidopsis, hypocotyl elongation under various light conditions was suppressed by exogenously supplied methyl jasmonate (MeJA). Moreover, this suppression by MeJA was particularly effective under red light condition. Mutant analyses suggested that SCFCOI1-mediated proteolysis was involved in this function. However, MeJA action still remained in the coi1 mutant, and (+)-7-iso-JA-L-Ile, a well-known active form of jasmonate, had a weaker effect than MeJA under the red light condition, suggesting that unknown signaling pathway are present in MeJA-mediated inhibition of hypocotyl elongation. EMS mutant screening identified two MeJA-insensitive hypocotyl elongation mutants, jasmonate resistance long hypocotyl 1 (jal1) and jal36, which had mutations in the phytochrome B (PHYB) gene. These analyses suggested that inhibition of hypocotyl elongation by jasmonates is enhanced under red light in phyB dependent manner.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s10265-012-0509-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Jasmonate; Hypocotyl elongation; phyB