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Front Plant Sci. 2014 May 14;5:191. doi: 10.3389/fpls.2014.00191. eCollection 2014.

Cytokinin treatments affect the apical-basal patterning of the Arabidopsis gynoecium and resemble the effects of polar auxin transport inhibition.

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Laboratorio Nacional de Genómica para la Biodiversidad, Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados del Instituto Politécnico Nacional Irapuato, México.
Departamento de Biotecnología y Bioquímica, Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados del Instituto Politécnico Nacional Irapuato, México.


The apical-basal axis of the Arabidopsis gynoecium is established early during development and is divided into four elements from the bottom to the top: the gynophore, the ovary, the style, and the stigma. Currently, it is proposed that the hormone auxin plays a critical role in the correct apical-basal patterning through a concentration gradient from the apical to the basal part of the gynoecium, as chemical inhibition of polar auxin transport through 1-N-naphtylphtalamic acid (NPA) application, severely affects the apical-basal patterning of the gynoecium. In this work, we show that the apical-basal patterning of gynoecia is also sensitive to exogenous cytokinin (benzyl amino purine, BAP) application in a similar way as to NPA. BAP and NPA treatments were performed in different mutant backgrounds where either cytokinin perception or auxin transport and perception were affected. We observed that cytokinin and auxin signaling mutants are hypersensitive to NPA treatment, and auxin transport and signaling mutants are hypersensitive to BAP treatment. BAP effects in apical-basal gynoecium patterning are very similar to the effects of NPA, therefore, it is possible that BAP affects auxin transport in the gynoecium. Indeed, not only the cytokinin-response TCS::GFP marker, but also the auxin efflux carrier PIN1 (PIN1::PIN1:GFP) were both affected in BAP-induced valveless gynoecia, suggesting that the BAP treatment producing the morphological changes has an impact on both in the response pattern to cytokinin and on auxin transport. In summary, we show that cytokinin affects proper apical-basal gynoecium patterning in Arabidopsis in a similar way to the inhibition of polar auxin transport, and that auxin and cytokinin mutants and markers suggest a relation between both hormones in this process.


Arabidopsis; apical-basal patterning; auxin; cytokinin; gynoecium; plant developmental biology

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