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J Exp Bot. 2008;59(12):3229-45. doi: 10.1093/jxb/ern200. Epub 2008 Aug 4.

Hormone- and light-regulated nucleocytoplasmic transport in plants: current status.

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Department of Biological Sciences, Yonsei University, 234 Heungup-Myun, Wonju-Si, 220-710, Korea.


The gene regulation mechanisms underlying hormone- and light-induced signal transduction in plants rely not only on post-translational modification and protein degradation, but also on selective inclusion and exclusion of proteins from the nucleus. For example, plant cells treated with light or hormones actively transport many signalling regulatory proteins, transcription factors, and even photoreceptors and hormone receptors into the nucleus, while actively excluding other proteins. The nuclear envelope (NE) is the physical and functional barrier that mediates this selective partitioning, and nuclear transport regulators transduce hormone- or light-initiated signalling pathways across the membrane to mediate nuclear activities. Recent reports revealed that mutating the proteins regulating nuclear transport through the pores, such as nucleoporins, alters the plant's response to a stimulus. In this review, recent works are introduced that have revealed the importance of regulated nucleocytoplasmic partitioning. These important findings deepen our understanding about how co-ordinated plant hormone and light signal transduction pathways facilitate communication between the cytoplasm and the nucleus. The roles of nucleoporin components within the nuclear pore complex (NPC) are also emphasized, as well as nuclear transport cargo, such as Ran/TC4 and its binding proteins (RanBPs), in this process. Recent findings concerning these proteins may provide a possible direction by which to characterize the regulatory potential of hormone- or light-triggered nuclear transport.

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