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Plant Cell. 2012 Mar;24(3):1066-80. doi: 10.1105/tpc.111.095059. Epub 2012 Mar 16.

The Arabidopsis ARCP protein, CSI1, which is required for microtubule stability, is necessary for root and anther development.

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National Key Laboratory of Plant Molecular Genetics, Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai 200032, China.


Armadillo repeat-containing proteins (ARCPs) are conserved across eukaryotic kingdoms and function in various processes. Regulation of microtubule stability by ARCPs exists widely in mammals and algae, but little is known in plants. Here, we present the functional characterization of an Arabidopsis thaliana ARCP, which was previously identified as Cellulose synthase-interactive protein1 (CSI1), and prove its crucial role in anther and root development. CSI1 is highly expressed in floral tissues, and knockout mutants of CSI1 (three allelic lines) accordingly exhibit defective anther dehiscence, which can be partially rescued by mammalian microtubule-stabilizer MAP4, suggesting that CSI1 functions by stabilizing the microtubular cytoskeleton. CSI1 binds microtubules in vitro, and immunofluorescence and coimmunoprecipitation studies confirmed the physical interactions between CSI1 and microtubules in vivo. Analysis using oryzalin, a microtubule-disrupting drug, further revealed the destabilized microtubules under CSI1 deficiency and confirmed the crucial role of CSI1 in microtubule stability. The dynamic change of CSI1 in response to dehydration strongly suggests the important function of CSI1 in dehydration-induced microtubule depolymerization and reorganization, which is crucial for anther development. These results indicate the pivotal role of CSI1 in anther development by regulating microtubule stability and hence cell morphogenesis.

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