Send to

Choose Destination
Front Plant Sci. 2013 Nov 19;4:439. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2013.00439.

Plant cell shape: modulators and measurements.

Author information

Max-Planck-Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology Potsdam, Germany.


Plant cell shape, seen as an integrative output, is of considerable interest in various fields, such as cell wall research, cytoskeleton dynamics and biomechanics. In this review we summarize the current state of knowledge on cell shape formation in plants focusing on shape of simple cylindrical cells, as well as in complex multipolar cells such as leaf pavement cells and trichomes. We summarize established concepts as well as recent additions to the understanding of how cells construct cell walls of a given shape and the underlying processes. These processes include cell wall synthesis, activity of the actin and microtubule cytoskeletons, in particular their regulation by microtubule associated proteins, actin-related proteins, GTP'ases and their effectors, as well as the recently-elucidated roles of plant hormone signaling and vesicular membrane trafficking. We discuss some of the challenges in cell shape research with a particular emphasis on quantitative imaging and statistical analysis of shape in 2D and 3D, as well as novel developments in this area. Finally, we review recent examples of the use of novel imaging techniques and how they have contributed to our understanding of cell shape formation.


Arabidopsis; Microtubules; actin; auxin; hypocotyl; pavement cell; shape tools

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Frontiers Media SA Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center