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Sci Rep. 2013 Oct 14;3:2723. doi: 10.1038/srep02723.

The boundary of the meristematic and elongation zones in roots: endoreduplication precedes rapid cell expansion.

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Department of Applied Biological Science Faculty of Science and Technology Tokyo University of Science 2641 Yamazaki, Noda, Chiba 278-8510, Japan.


Plant roots consist of a meristematic zone of mitotic cells and an elongation zone of rapidly expanding cells, in which DNA replication often occurs without cell division, a process known as endoreduplication. The duration of the cell cycle and DNA replication, as measured by 5-ethynyl-2'-deoxy-uridine (EdU) incorporation, differed between the two regions (17 h in the meristematic zone, 30 h in the elongation zone). Two distinct subnuclear patterns of EdU signals, whole and speckled, marked nuclei undergoing DNA replication at early and late S phase, respectively. The boundary region between the meristematic and elongation zones was analysed by a combination of DNA replication imaging and optical estimation of the amount of DNA in each nucleus (C-value). We found a boundary cell with 4C nuclei exhibiting the whole pattern of EdU signals. Analyses of cells in the boundary region revealed that endoreduplication precedes rapid cell elongation in roots.

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