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Curr Opin Plant Biol. 2009 Oct;12(5):587-92. doi: 10.1016/j.pbi.2009.07.015. Epub 2009 Sep 23.

One, two, three...models for trichome patterning in Arabidopsis?

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University of Cologne, Botanical Institute, Gyrhofstr. 15, 50931 Cologne, Germany.


Trichome patterning in Arabidopsis rosette leaves serves as a model system to study how individual cells are determined in a regular spacing pattern from initially equivalent cells. A conserved gene cassette regulates this spacing pattern. bHLH, MYB, and WD40 factors are positive regulators of trichome development that are inhibited by R3 single-repeat MYB proteins. One positive regulator, the WD40-protein, and the negative regulators are mobile and are transported in opposite directions: the WD40 factor moves to the negative regulators away from trichome initials. This movement behavior and the genetic and molecular interactions between the contributing genes and proteins make it very difficult to derive the mechanistic core behind pattern formation. Attempts to develop mathematical models toward this end are critically discussed.

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