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Annu Rev Plant Biol. 2008;59:365-86. doi: 10.1146/annurev.arplant.59.032607.092949.

A genetic regulatory network in the development of trichomes and root hairs.

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Plant Science Center, RIKEN, Yokohama, Kanagawa 230-0045, Japan.


Trichomes and root hairs differentiate from epidermal cells in the aerial tissues and roots, respectively. Because trichomes and root hairs are easily accessible, particularly in the model plant Arabidopsis, their development has become a well-studied model of cell differentiation and growth. Molecular genetic analyses using Arabidopsis mutants have demonstrated that the differentiation of trichomes and root hair/hairless cells is regulated by similar molecular mechanisms. Transcriptional complexes regulate differentiation into trichome cells and root hairless cells, and formation of the transcriptional complexes is inhibited in neighboring cells. Control of cell growth after fate determination has also been analyzed using Arabidopsis mutants. The progression of endoreduplication cycles, reorientation of microtubules, and organization of the actin cytoskeleton play important roles in trichome growth. Various cellular components such as ion channels, the actin cytoskeleton, microtubules and cell wall materials, and intracellular signal transduction act to establish and maintain root hair tip growth.

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