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Nat Cell Biol. 2005 Jun;7(6):535-41.

Coupling cell proliferation and development in plants.

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  • 1Centro de Biologia Molecular Severo Ochoa, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas and Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Cantoblanco, 28049 Madrid, Spain.


Plant genome projects have revealed that both the cell-cycle components and the overall cell-cycle architecture are highly evolutionarily conserved. In addition to the temporal and spatial regulation of cell-cycle progression in individual cells, multicellularity has imposed extra layers of complexity that impinge on the balance of cell proliferation and growth, differentiation and organogenesis. In contrast to animals, organogenesis in plants is a postembryonic and continuous process. Differentiated plant cells can revert to a pluripotent state, proliferate and transdifferentiate. This unique potential is strikingly illustrated by the ability of certain cells to produce a mass of undifferentiated cells or a fully totipotent embryo, which can regenerate mature plants. Conversely, plant cells are highly resistant to oncogenic transformation. This review discusses the role that cell-cycle regulators may have at the interface between cell division and differentiation, and in the context of the high plasticity of plant cells.

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