PACLOBUTRAZOL-RESISTANCE Gene Family Regulates Floral Organ Growth with Unequal Genetic Redundancy in Arabidopsis thaliana.
ABSTRACT: A PACLOBUTRAZOL-RESISTANCE (PRE) gene family, consisting of six genes in Arabidopsis thaliana, encodes a group of helix-loop-helix proteins that act in the growth-promoting transcriptional network. To delineate the specific role of each of the PRE genes in organ growth, we took a reverse genetic approach by constructing high order pre loss-of-function mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana. In addition to dwarf vegetative growth, some double or high order pre mutants exhibited defective floral development, resulting in reduced fertility. While pre2pre5 is normally fertile, both pre2pre6 and pre5pre6 showed reduced fertility. Further, the reduced fertility was exacerbated in the pre2pre5pre6 mutant, indicative of the redundant and critical roles of these PREs. Self-pollination assay and scanning electron microscopy analysis showed that the sterility of pre2pre5pre6 was mainly ascribed to the reduced cell elongation of anther filament, limiting access of pollens to stigma. We found that the expression of a subset of flower-development related genes including ARGOS, IAA19, ACS8, and MYB24 was downregulated in the pre2pre5pre6 flowers. Given these results, we propose that PREs, with unequal functional redundancy, take part in the coordinated growth of floral organs, contributing to successful autogamous reproduction in Arabidopsis thaliana.
Project description:Copper deficiency reduces plant growth, male fertility, and seed set. The contribution of copper to female fertility and the underlying molecular aspects of copper deficiency-caused phenotypes are not well known. We show that among copper deficiency-caused defects in <i>Arabidopsis thaliana</i> were also the increased shoot branching, delayed flowering and senescence, and entirely abolished gynoecium fertility. The increased shoot branching of copper-deficient plants was rescued by the exogenous application of auxin or copper. The delayed flowering was associated with the decreased expression of the floral activator, <i>FT</i>. Copper deficiency also decreased the expression of senescence-associated genes, <i>WRKY53</i> and <i>SAG13</i>, but increased the expression of <i>SAG12</i>. The reduced fertility of copper-deficient plants stemmed from multiple factors including the abnormal stigma papillae development, the abolished gynoecium fertility, and the failure of anthers to dehisce. The latter defect was associated with reduced lignification, the upregulation of copper microRNAs and the downregulation of their targets, laccases, implicated in lignin synthesis. Copper-deficient plants accumulated ROS in pollen and had reduced cytochrome <i>c</i> oxidase activity in both leaves and floral buds. This study opens new avenues for the investigation into the relationship between copper homeostasis, hormone-mediated shoot architecture, gynoecium fertility, and copper deficiency-derived nutritional signals leading to the delay in flowering and senescence.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Gibberellin (GA) and jasmonate (JA) are two essential phytohormones for filament elongation in Arabidopsis. GA and JA trigger degradation of DELLAs and JASMONATE ZIM-domain (JAZ) proteins through SCFSLY1 and SCFCOI1 separately to activate filament elongation. In JA pathway, JAZs interact with MYB21 and MYB24 to control filament elongation. However, little is known how DELLAs regulate filament elongation. RESULTS:Here we showed that DELLAs interact with MYB21 and MYB24, and that R2R3 domains of MYB21 and MYB24 are responsible for interaction with DELLAs. Furthermore, we demonstrated that DELLA and JAZ proteins coordinately repress the transcriptional function of MYB21 and MYB24 to inhibit filament elongation. CONCLUSION:We discovered that DELLAs interact with MYB21 and MYB24, and that DELLAs and JAZs attenuate the transcriptional function of MYB21 and MYB24 to control filament elongation. This study reveals a novel cross-talk mechanism of GA and JA in the regulation of filament elongation in Arabidopsis.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Arabidopsis thaliana, a member of the Brassicaceae family is the dominant genetic model plant. However, while the flowers within the Brassicaceae members are rather uniform, mainly radially symmetrical, mostly white with fixed organ numbers, species within the Cleomaceae, the sister family to the Brassicaceae show a more variable floral morphology. We were interested in understanding the molecular basis for these morphological differences. To this end, the floral transcriptome of a hybrid Tarenaya hassleriana, a Cleomaceae with monosymmetric, bright purple flowers was sequenced, annotated and analyzed in respect to floral regulators. RESULTS: We obtained a comprehensive floral transcriptome with high depth and coverage close to saturation analyzed using rarefaction analysis a method well known in biodiversity studies. Gene expression was analyzed by calculating reads per kilobase gene model per million reads (RPKM) and for selected genes in silico expression data was corroborated by qRT-PCR analysis. Candidate transcription factors were identified based on differences in expression pattern between A. thaliana and T. hassleriana, which are likely key regulators of the T. hassleriana specific floral characters such as coloration and male sterility in the hybrid plant used. Analysis of lineage specific genes was carried out with members of the fabids and malvids. CONCLUSIONS: The floral transcriptome of T. hassleriana provides insights into key pathways involved in the regulation of late anthocyanin biosynthesis, male fertility, flowering time and organ growth regulation which are unique traits compared the model organism A. thaliana. Analysis of lineage specific genes carried out with members of the fabids and malvids suggests an extensive gene birth rate in the lineage leading to core Brassicales while only few genes were potentially lost during core Brassicales evolution, which possibly reflects the result of the At-? whole genome duplication. Our analysis should facilitate further analyses into the molecular mechanisms of floral morphogenesis and pigmentation and the mechanisms underlying the rather diverse floral morphologies in the Cleomaceae.
Project description:The phytohormone jasmonates (JAs) regulate various defense responses and diverse developmental processes including stamen development and fertility. Previous studies showed that JA induces CORONATINE INSENSITIVE 1-mediated degradation of JA ZIM-domain (JAZ) proteins, and activates the MYB transcription factors (such as MYB21 and MYB24) to regulate stamen development. In this study, we further uncover the mechanism underlying how MYB24 interacts with JAZs to control JA-regulated stamen development. We show that N-terminus of MYB21/24 interacts with 10 out of 12 JAZ proteins while both N-terminus and C-terminus of MYB24 are involved in dimerization of MYB21 and MYB24. Interestingly, male sterility of the JA-deficient mutant opr3 can be rescued by suitable level of the MYB24 overexpression but not by excessive high level of MYB24. Surprisingly, overexpression of MYB24NT, but not MYB24CT, could cause male sterility. These results provide new insights on MYB factors in JA-regulated stamen development.
Project description:Flower maturation consists of several events that contribute to reproductive success as flowers open, including petal expansion, stamen filament elongation, pollen release, nectary maturation, stigma growth, and gynoecium maturation to support pollen tube growth. The Arabidopsis transcription factors ARF6 (Auxin Response Factor 6) and ARF8 regulate all of these processes, in part by activating jasmonate biosynthesis. Jasmonates in turn activate genes encoding the transcription factors MYB21 and MYB24, which mediate a subset of the processes controlled by ARF6 and ARF8. This experiment was designed to characterize gene expression in flowers before and after they open, and to determine how arf6 arf8 and myb21 myb24 mutation combinations affect these gene expression patterns. Three biological replicates were prepared at each of two developmental stages, stage 12 (oldest closed buds) and stage 13 (youngest open flowers), for three genotypes (Wild type, arf6-2 arf8-3, and myb21-5 myb24-5). For the mutant genotypes, stage 13 flowers do not actually open, so corresponding flowers of equivalent age were chosen based on the position of open flowers in wild-type inflorescences.
Project description:Control of cellular proliferation in plant meristems is important for maintaining the correct number and position of developing organs. One of the genes identified in the control of floral and apical meristem size and floral organ number in Arabidopsis thaliana is WIGGUM. In wiggum mutants, one of the most striking phenotypes is an increase in floral organ number, particularly in the sepals and petals, correlating with an increase in the width of young floral meristems. Additional phenotypes include reduced and delayed germination, delayed flowering, maturation, and senescence, decreased internode elongation, shortened roots, aberrant phyllotaxy of flowers, aberrant sepal development, floral buds that open precociously, and occasional apical meristem fasciation. As a first step in determining a molecular function for WIGGUM, we used positional cloning to identify the gene. DNA sequencing revealed that WIGGUM is identical to ERA1 (enhanced response to abscisic acid), a previously identified farnesyltransferase beta-subunit gene of Arabidopsis. This finding provides a link between protein modification by farnesylation and the control of meristem size. Using in situ hybridization, we examined the expression of ERA1 throughout development and found it to be nearly ubiquitous. This extensive expression domain is consistent with the pleiotropic nature of wiggum mutants and highlights a broad utility for farnesylation in plant growth and development.
Project description:Similar to other eukaryotes, splicing is emerging as an important process affecting development and stress tolerance in plants. Ski-interacting protein (SKIP), a splicing factor, is essential for circadian clock function and abiotic stress tolerance; however, the mechanisms whereby it regulates flowering time are unknown.In this study, we found that SKIP is required for the splicing of serrated leaves and early flowering (SEF) pre-messenger RNA (mRNA), which encodes a component of the ATP-dependent SWR1 chromatin remodeling complex (SWR1-C). Defects in the splicing of SEF pre-mRNA reduced H2A.Z enrichment at FLC, MAF4, and MAF5, suppressed the expression of these genes, and produced an early flowering phenotype in skip-1 plants.Our findings indicate that SKIP regulates SWR1-C function via alternative splicing to control the floral transition in Arabidopsis thaliana.
Project description:In hermaphroditic Arabidopsis, the phytohormone gibberellin (GA) stimulates stamen development by opposing the DELLA repression of B and C classes of floral homeotic genes. GA can promote male flower formation in cucumber (Cucumis sativus L.), a typical monoecious vegetable with unisexual flowers, and the molecular mechanism remains unknown. Here we characterized a DELLA homolog CsGAIP in cucumber, and we found that CsGAIP is highly expressed in stem and male flower buds. In situ hybridization showed that CsGAIP is greatly enriched in the stamen primordia, especially during the hermaphrodite stage of flower development. Further, CsGAIP protein is located in nucleus. CsGAIP can partially rescue the plant height, stamen development and fertility phenotypes of Arabidopsis rga-24/gai-t6 mutant, and ectopic expression of CsGAIP in wide-type Arabidopsis results in reduced number of stamens and decreased transcription of B class floral homeotic genes APETALA3 (AP3) and PISTILLATA (PI). Our data suggest that monoecious CsGAIP may inhibit staminate development through transcriptional repression of B class floral homeotic genes in Arabidopsis.
Project description:KEY MESSAGE:Linear modelling approaches detected significant gradients in organ growth and patterning across early flowers of the Arabidopsis inflorescence and uncovered evidence of new roles for gibberellin in floral development. Most flowering plants, including the genetic model Arabidopsis thaliana, produce multiple flowers in sequence from a reproductive shoot apex to form a flower spike (inflorescence). The development of individual flowers on an Arabidopsis inflorescence has typically been considered as highly stereotypical and uniform, but this assumption is contradicted by the existence of mutants with phenotypes visible in early flowers only. This phenomenon is demonstrated by mutants partially impaired in the biosynthesis of the phytohormone gibberellin (GA), in which floral organ growth is retarded in the first flowers to be produced but has recovered spontaneously by the 10th flower. We presently lack systematic data from multiple flowers across the Arabidopsis inflorescence to explain such changes. Using mutants of the GA 20-OXIDASE (GA20ox) GA biosynthesis gene family to manipulate endogenous GA levels, we investigated the dynamics of changing floral organ growth across the early Arabidopsis inflorescence (flowers 1-10). Modelling of floral organ lengths identified a significant, GA-independent gradient of increasing stamen length relative to the pistil in the wild-type inflorescence that was separable from other, GA-dependent effects. It was also found that the first flowers exhibited unstable organ patterning in contrast to later flowers and that this instability was prolonged by exogenous GA treatment. These findings indicate that the development of individual flowers is influenced by hitherto unknown factors acting across the inflorescence and also suggest novel functions for GA in floral patterning.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The same species of plant can exhibit very diverse sizes and shapes of organs that are genetically determined. Characterising genetic variation underlying this morphological diversity is an important objective in evolutionary studies and it also helps identify the functions of genes influencing plant growth and development. Extensive screens of mutagenised Arabidopsis populations have identified multiple genes and mechanisms affecting organ size and shape, but relatively few studies have exploited the rich diversity of natural populations to identify genes involved in growth control. RESULTS:We screened a relatively well characterised collection of Arabidopsis thaliana accessions for variation in petal size. Association analyses identified sequence and gene expression variation on chromosome 4 that made a substantial contribution to differences in petal area. Variation in the expression of a previously uncharacterised gene At4g16850 (named as KSK) had a substantial role on variation in organ size by influencing cell size. Over-expression of KSK led to larger petals with larger cells and promoted the formation of stamenoid features. The expression of auxin-responsive genes known to limit cell growth was reduced in response to KSK over-expression. ANT expression was also reduced in KSK over-expression lines, consistent with altered floral identities. Auxin responses were reduced in KSK over-expressing cells, consistent with changes in auxin-responsive gene expression. KSK may therefore influence auxin responses during petal development. CONCLUSIONS:Understanding how genetic variation influences plant growth is important for both evolutionary and mechanistic studies. We used natural populations of Arabidopsis thaliana to identify sequence variation in a promoter region of Arabidopsis accessions that mediated differences in the expression of a previously uncharacterised membrane protein. This variation contributed to altered auxin responses and cell size during petal growth.