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Plant J. 2013 Apr;74(1):13-24. doi: 10.1111/tpj.12098. Epub 2013 Feb 20.

AXR1 promotes the Arabidopsis cytokinin response by facilitating ARR5 proteolysis.

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Plant Physiology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Program, Department of Plant and Soil Science, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546, USA.


The plant hormone cytokinin plays essential roles in many aspects of growth and development. The cytokinin signal is transmitted by a multi-step phosphorelay to the members of two functionally antagonistic classes of Arabidopsis response regulators (ARRs): type B ARRs (response activators) and type A ARRs (negative-feedback regulators). Previous studies have shown that mutations in AXR1, encoding a subunit of the E1 enzyme in the RUB (related to ubiquitin) modification pathway, lead to decreased cytokinin sensitivity. Here we show that the cytokinin resistance of axr1 seedlings is suppressed by loss of function of the type A ARR family member ARR5. Based on the established role of the RUB pathway in ubiquitin-dependent proteolysis, these data suggest that AXR1 promotes the cytokinin response by facilitating type A ARR degradation. Indeed, both genetic (axr1 mutants) and chemical (MLN4924) suppression of RUB E1 increased ARR5 stability, suggesting that the ubiquitin ligase that promotes ARR5 proteolysis requires RUB modification for optimal activity.

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