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Curr Biol. 2011 Jul 26;21(14):1232-8. doi: 10.1016/j.cub.2011.06.025. Epub 2011 Jul 7.

FLOWERING LOCUS T regulates stomatal opening.

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Division of Biological Science, Graduate School of Science, Nagoya University, Nagoya, Aichi 464-8602, Japan.


Stomatal pores surrounded by a pair of guard cells in the plant epidermis control gas exchange for photosynthesis in response to light, CO(2), and phytohormone abscisic acid. Phototropins (phot1 and phot2) are plant blue-light receptor kinases and mediate stomatal opening via activation of the plasma membrane H(+)-ATPase. However, the signaling mechanism from phototropins to the H(+)-ATPase has yet to be determined. Here, we show that FLOWERING LOCUS T (FT) is expressed in guard cells and regulates stomatal opening. We isolated an scs (suppressor of closed-stomata phenotype in phot1 phot2) 1-1 mutant of Arabidopsis thaliana and showed that scs1-1 carries a novel null early flowering 3 (elf3) allele in a phot1 phot2 background. scs1-1 (elf3 phot1 phot2 triple mutant) had an open-stomata phenotype with high H(+)-ATPase activity and showed increased levels of FT mRNA in guard cells. Transgenic plants overexpressing FT in guard cells showed open stomata, whereas a loss-of-function FT allele, ft-1, exhibited closed stomata and failed to activate the H(+)-ATPase in response to blue light. Our results define a new cell-autonomous role for FT and demonstrate that the flowering time genes ELF3 and FT are involved in the regulation of H(+)-ATPase by blue light in guard cells.

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