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Trends Plant Sci. 2009 May;14(5):270-9. doi: 10.1016/j.tplants.2009.02.007. Epub 2009 Apr 15.

Emerging connections in the ethylene signaling network.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114, USA.


The gaseous plant hormone ethylene acts as a pivotal mediator to respond to and coordinate internal and external cues in modulating plant growth dynamics and developmental programs. Genetic analysis of Arabidopsis thaliana has been used to identify key components and to build a linear ethylene-signaling pathway from the receptors through to the nuclear transcription factors. Studies applying integrative approaches have revealed new regulators, molecular connections and mechanisms in ethylene signaling and unexpected links to other plant hormones. Here, we review and discuss recent discoveries about the functional mode of ethylene receptor complexes, dual mitogen-activated protein kinase cascade signaling, stability control of the master nuclear transcription activator ETHYLENE INSENSITIVE 3 (EIN3), and the contextual relationships between ethylene and other plant hormones, such as auxin and gibberellins, in organ-specific growth regulation.

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