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Plant Physiol. 2009 Nov;151(3):1155-66. doi: 10.1104/pp.109.143024. Epub 2009 Sep 29.

Knockdown of CELL DIVISION CYCLE16 reveals an inverse relationship between lateral root and nodule numbers and a link to auxin in Medicago truncatula.

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Department of Plant Biology, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota 55108, USA.


The postembryonic development of lateral roots and nodules is a highly regulated process. Recent studies suggest the existence of cross talk and interdependency in the growth of these two organs. Although plant hormones, including auxin and cytokinin, appear to be key players in coordinating this cross talk, very few genes that cross-regulate root and nodule development have been uncovered so far. This study reports that a homolog of CELL DIVISION CYCLE16 (CDC16), a core component of the Anaphase Promoting Complex, is one of the key mediators in controlling the overall number of lateral roots and nodules. A partial suppression of this gene in Medicago truncatula leads to a decrease in number of lateral roots and a 4-fold increase in number of nodules. The roots showing lowered expression of MtCDC16 also show reduced sensitivity to phytohormone auxin, thus providing a potential function of CDC16 in auxin signaling.

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