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J Exp Bot. 2003 Nov;54(392):2511-7. Epub 2003 Sep 25.

Cytokinin levels in leaves, leaf exudate and shoot apical meristem of Arabidopsis thaliana during floral transition.

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  • 1Department of Life Sciences, Laboratory of Plant Physiology, University of Liège, B22 Sart Tilman, B-4000 Liège, Belgium.


Understanding the complete picture of floral transition is still impaired by the fact that physiological studies mainly concern plant species whose genetics is poorly known, and vice versa. Arabidopsis thaliana has been successfully used to unravel signalling pathways by genetic and molecular approaches, but analyses are still required to determine the physiological signals involved in the control of floral transition. In this work, the putative role of cytokinins was investigated using vegetative plants of Arabidopsis (Columbia) induced to flower synchronously by a single 22 h long day. Cytokinins were analysed in leaf extracts, leaf phloem exudate and in the shoot apical meristem at different times during floral transition. It was found that, in both the leaf tissues and leaf exudate, isopentenyladenine forms of cytokinins increased from 16 h after the start of the long day. At 30 h, the shoot apical meristem of induced plants contained more isopentenyladenine and zeatin than vegetative controls. These cytokinin increases correlate well with the early events of floral transition.

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