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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2005 Feb;8(1):32-7.

Auxin and embryo axis formation: the ends in sight?

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Centre for Plant Molecular Biology (ZMBP), Developmental Genetics, Tübingen University, Auf der Morgenstelle 3, D-72076 Tübingen, Germany.


The major axis of polarity of the plant embryo serves as a reference for the formation of meristems and, thus, for all subsequent development. Mechanisms underlying the establishment of the embryo axis itself have remained elusive. This is now changing with recent reports documenting a role for auxin in embryo axis formation. Auxin accumulates dynamically at specific positions that correlate with developmental decisions in early embryogenesis, and this ties developmental decisions to both transport regulators and components of the response machinery. A major challenge for the future is to determine how auxin-dependent processes interact with other as yet unknown factors to mediate differential gene expression patterns in early embryogenesis.

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