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Cell. 1999 Oct 15;99(2):199-209.

Distinct mechanisms promote polarity establishment in carpels of Arabidopsis.

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Section of Plant Biology, University of California, Davis 95616, USA.


Lateral organs of plants display asymmetry with abaxial identity being specified by members of the Arabidopsis YABBY gene family. Mutations in CRABS CLAW, the founding family member, display ectopic formation of adaxial carpel tissues only when the functions of other genes, such as GYMNOS or KANADI, are also compromised. Mutations in these genes alone do not result in loss of polar differentiation, and therefore, they act redundantly with CRABS CLAW to establish polarity. As GYMNOS encodes a uniformly expressed homolog of the chromatin-remodeling protein, Mi2, we argue that the unique genetic interactions do not reflect a molecular redundancy. Rather, CRABS CLAW regulates transcription spatially, whereas GYMNOS regulates downstream targets temporally to ensure proper differentiation of the carpels.

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