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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Growth regulators and the control of nucleotide sugar flux.

A small number of plant growth regulators are involved in the control of cell expansion. Despite knowledge of some of their signal transduction cascades, surprisingly little is known of how basic cell expansion-related processes, such as cell wall biosynthesis, are affected during growth. The Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) mutant root hair defective1 (rhd1) lacks a functional UDP-glucose 4-epimerase gene, UGE4, which is involved in channeling UDP-D-galactose (UDP-D-Gal) into cell wall polymers. Here, we use rhd1 as a genetic model to analyze the physiological and genetic controls of nucleotide sugar flux. We find that ethylene specifically suppresses all visible aspects of the rhd1 phenotype. The ethylene-triggered suppression of rhd1 is negatively regulated by CONSTITUTIVE TRIPLE RESPONSE1 and requires the function of the wild-type genes ETHYLENE INSENSITIVE2 (EIN2), EIN4, AUXIN-RESISTENT1, and ETHYLENE-INSENSITIVE ROOT1 but does not depend on the activity of wild-type ETHYLENE RECEPTOR1 or EIN3 genes, highlighting the nonlinearity of ethylene signal transduction. Ethylene does not induce the expression of alternative UGE genes but, instead, suppresses the expression of two isoforms, UGE1 and UGE3, in a tissue-specific manner. Ethylene restores the biosynthesis of galactose-containing xyloglucan and arabinosylated galactan cell wall polymers in rhd1 back to wild-type levels. However, the dependence on UGE4 of pectic (1-->4)-beta-D-galactan and glucuronosyl-modified AGP biosynthesis is exacerbated. Our data suggest that ethylene and auxin together participate in the flux control of UDP-D-Gal into cell wall polymers and that the genetic control of this process is qualitatively distinct from previously described responses to ethylene.[1]


  1. Growth regulators and the control of nucleotide sugar flux. Seifert, G.J., Barber, C., Wells, B., Roberts, K. Plant Cell (2004) [Pubmed]
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