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Planta. 2006 Jan;223(2):315-28. Epub 2005 Oct 6.

Role of auxin in regulating Arabidopsis flower development.

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Department of Plant Sciences, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel.


To elucidate the role of auxin in flower morphogenesis, its distribution patterns were studied during flower development in Arabidopsis thaliana (L.) Heynh. Expression of DR5::GUS was regarded to reflect sites of free auxin, while immunolocalization with auxin polyclonal antibodies visualized conjugated auxin distribution. The youngest flower bud was loaded with conjugated auxin. During development, the apparent concentration of free auxin increased in gradual patterns starting at the floral-organ tip. Anthers are major sites of high concentrations of free auxin that retard the development of neighboring floral organs in both the acropetal and basipetal directions. The IAA-producing anthers synchronize flower development by retarding petal development and nectary gland activity almost up to anthesis. Tapetum cells of young anthers contain free IAA which accumulates in pollen grains, suggesting that auxin promotes pollen-tube growth towards the ovules. High amounts of free auxin in the stigma induce a wide xylem fan immediately beneath it. After fertilization, the developing embryos and seeds show elevated concentrations of auxin, which establish their axial polarity. This developmental pattern of auxin production during floral-bud development suggests that young organs which produce high concentrations of free IAA inhibit or retard organ-primordium initiation and development at the shoot tip.

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