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Plant J. 2000 Dec;24(5):591-9.

A MADS domain gene involved in the transition to flowering in Arabidopsis.

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Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Institute for Plant Sciences, Universit├Ątstrasse 2, CH-8092 Z├╝rich, Switzerland.


Flowering time in many plants is triggered by environmental factors that lead to uniform flowering in plant populations, ensuring higher reproductive success. So far, several genes have been identified that are involved in flowering time control. AGL20 (AGAMOUS LIKE 20) is a MADS domain gene from Arabidopsis that is activated in shoot apical meristems during the transition to flowering. By transposon tagging we have identified late flowering agl20 mutants, showing that AGL20 is involved in flowering time control. In previously described late flowering mutants of the long-day and constitutive pathways of floral induction the expression of AGL20 is down-regulated, demonstrating that AGL20 acts downstream to the mutated genes. Moreover, we can show that AGL20 is also regulated by the gibberellin (GA) pathway, indicating that AGL20 integrates signals of different pathways of floral induction and might be a central component for the induction of flowering. In addition, the constitutive expression of AGL20 in Arabidopsis is sufficient for photoperiod independent flowering and the over-expression of the orthologous gene from mustard, MADSA, in the classical short-day tobacco Maryland Mammoth bypasses the strict photoperiodic control of flowering.

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