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Plant Cell Physiol. 2006 Apr;47(4):513-22. Epub 2006 Feb 14.

Role of the SPIRAL1 gene family in anisotropic growth of Arabidopsis thaliana.

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Graduate School of Biological Sciences, Nara Institute of Science and Technology, 8916-5 Takayama, Ikoma, Nara, 630-0192 Japan.


Arabidopsis spiral1 (spr1) mutants show a right-handed helical growth phenotype in roots and etiolated hypocotyls due to impaired directional growth of rapidly expanding cells. SPR1 encodes a small protein with as yet unknown biochemical functions, though its localization to cortical microtubules (MTs) suggests that SPR1 maintains directional cell expansion by regulating cortical MT functions. The Arabidopsis genome contains five SPR1-LIKE (SP1L) genes that share high sequence identity in N- and C-terminal regions. Overexpression of SP1Ls rescued the helical growth phenotype of spr1, indicating that SPR1 and SP1L proteins share the same biochemical functions. Expression analyses revealed that SPR1 and SP1L genes are transcribed in partially overlapping tissues. A combination of spr1 and sp1l mutations resulted in randomly oriented cortical MT arrays and isotropic expansion of epidermal cells. These observations suggest that SPR1 and SP1Ls act redundantly in maintaining the cortical MT organization essential for anisotropic cell growth, and that the helical growth phenotype of spr1 results from a partially compromised state of cortical MTs. Additionally, inflorescence stems of spr1 sp1l multiple mutants showed a right-handed tendril-like twining growth, indicating that a directional winding response may be conferred to the non-directional nutational movement by modulating the expression of SPR1 homologs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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