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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2007 Feb;10(1):39-43. Epub 2006 Nov 28.

CLE peptide ligands and their roles in establishing meristems.

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Plant Research International B.V., B.U. Bioscience, P.O. Box 16, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands.


Research in the past decade revealed that peptide ligands, also called peptide hormones, play a crucial role in intercellular communication and defense response in plants. Recent studies demonstrated that a family of plant-specific genes, CLAVATA3 (CLV3)/ENDOSPERM SURROUNDING REGION (ESR) (CLE), which has at least 31 members in Arabidopsis genome, are able to generate extracellular peptides to regulate cell division and differentiation. A hydroxyl 12-amino acid peptide derived from the conserved CLE motif of CLV3 promotes cell differentiation, whereas another CLE-derived peptide suppresses the differentiation. These peptides probably interact with membrane-bound, leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinases (LRR-RLKs) to execute the decision between cell proliferation and differentiation.

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