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Plant Cell. 2012 Apr;24(4):1534-48. doi: 10.1105/tpc.111.092304. Epub 2012 Apr 13.

NADPH thioredoxin reductase C is localized in plastids of photosynthetic and nonphotosynthetic tissues and is involved in lateral root formation in Arabidopsis.

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Instituto de Bioquímica Vegetal y Fotosíntesis, Universidad de Sevilla-Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, 41092 Sevilla, Spain.


Plastids are organelles present in photosynthetic and nonphotosynthetic plant tissues. While it is well known that thioredoxin-dependent redox regulation is essential for leaf chloroplast function, little is known of the redox regulation in plastids of nonphotosynthetic tissues, which cannot use light as a direct source of reducing power. Thus, the question remains whether redox regulation operates in nonphotosynthetic plastid function and how it is integrated with chloroplasts for plant growth. Here, we show that NADPH-thioredoxin reductase C (NTRC), previously reported as exclusive to green tissues, is also expressed in nonphotosynthetic tissues of Arabidopsis thaliana, where it is localized to plastids. Moreover, we show that NTRC is involved in maintaining the redox homeostasis of plastids also in nonphotosynthetic organs. To test the relationship between plastids of photosynthetic and nonphotosynthetic tissues, transgenic plants were obtained with redox homeostasis restituted exclusively in leaves or in roots, through the expression of NTRC under the control of organ-specific promoters in the ntrc mutant. Our results show that fully functional root amyloplasts are not sufficient for root, or leaf, growth, but fully functional chloroplasts are necessary and sufficient to support wild-type rates of root growth and lateral root formation.

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