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Planta. 2002 Mar;214(5):694-702. Epub 2001 Nov 10.

ASYMMETRIC LEAVES1, an Arabidopsis gene that is involved in the control of cell differentiation in leaves.

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Shanghai Institute of Plant Physiology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 300 Fenglin Road, Shanghai 200032, China.


During leaf development, the formation of dorsal-ventral and proximal-distal axes is central to leaf morphogenesis. To investigate the genetic basis of dorsoventrality and proximodistality in the leaf, we screened for mutants of Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. with defects in leaf morphogenesis. We describe here the phenotypic analysis of three mutant alleles that we have isolated. These mutants show varying degrees of abnormality including dwarfism, broad leaf lamina, and aberrant floral organs and fruits. Genetic analysis revealed that these mutations are alleles of the previously isolated mutant asymmetric leaves1 ( as1). In addition to the leaf phenotypes described previously, these alleles display other phenotypes that were not observed. These include: (i) some rosette leaves with petiole growth underneath the leaf lamina; (ii) leaf vein branching in the petiole; and (iii) a leaf lamina with an epidermis similar to that on the petiole. The mutant phenotypes suggest that the ASYMMETRIC LEAVES1 ( AS1) gene is involved in the control of cell differentiation in leaves. As the first step in determining a molecular function for AS1, we have identified the AS1 gene using map-based cloning. The AS1 gene encodes a MYB-domain protein that is homologous to the Antirrhinum PHANTASTICA ( PHAN) and maize ROUGH SHEATH2 ( RS2) genes. AS1 is expressed nearly ubiquitously, consistent with the pleiotropic mutant phenotypes. High levels of AS1 expression were found in tissues with highly proliferative cells, which further suggests a role in cell division and early cell differentiation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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