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PLoS Genet. 2016 Aug 16;12(8):e1006252. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1006252. eCollection 2016 Aug.

Arabidopsis Type II Phosphatidylinositol 4-Kinase PI4Kγ5 Regulates Auxin Biosynthesis and Leaf Margin Development through Interacting with Membrane-Bound Transcription Factor ANAC078.

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National Key Laboratory of Plant Molecular Genetics, CAS Center for Excellence in Molecular Plant Sciences, Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Shanghai, China.


Normal leaf margin development is important for leaf morphogenesis and contributes to diverse leaf shapes in higher plants. We here show the crucial roles of an atypical type II phosphatidylinositol 4-kinase, PI4Kγ5, in Arabidopsis leaf margin development. PI4Kγ5 presents a dynamics expression pattern along with leaf development and a T-DNA mutant lacking PI4Kγ5, pi4kγ5-1, presents serrated leaves, which is resulted from the accelerated cell division and increased auxin concentration at serration tips. Studies revealed that PI4Kγ5 interacts with and phosphorylates a membrane-bound NAC transcription factor, ANAC078. Previous studies demonstrated that membrane-bound transcription factors regulate gene transcription by undergoing proteolytic process to translocate into nucleus, and ANAC078 undergoes proteolysis by cleaving off the transmembrane region and carboxyl terminal. Western blot analysis indeed showed that ANAC078 deleting of carboxyl terminal is significantly reduced in pi4kγ5-1, indicating that PI4Kγ5 is important for the cleavage of ANAC078. This is consistent with the subcellular localization observation showing that fluorescence by GFP-ANAC078 is detected at plasma membrane but not nucleus in pi4kγ5-1 mutant and that expression of ANAC078 deleting of carboxyl terminal, driven by PI4Kγ5 promoter, could rescue the leaf serration defects of pi4kγ5-1. Further analysis showed that ANAC078 suppresses the auxin synthesis by directly binding and regulating the expression of auxin synthesis-related genes. These results indicate that PI4Kγ5 interacts with ANAC078 to negatively regulate auxin synthesis and hence influences cell proliferation and leaf development, providing informative clues for the regulation of in situ auxin synthesis and cell division, as well as the cleavage and functional mechanism of membrane-bound transcription factors.

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