WUSCHEL-RELATED HOMEOBOX4 is involved in meristem maintenance and is negatively regulated by the CLE gene FCP1 in rice

Yoshihiro Ohmori, Wakana Tanaka, Mikiko Kojima, Hitoshi Sakakibara, Hiro-Yuki Hirano
Plant Cell 2013, 25 (1): 229-41
The shoot apical meristem is the ultimate source of the cells that constitute the entire aboveground portion of the plant body. In Arabidopsis thaliana, meristem maintenance is regulated by the negative feedback loop of WUSCHEL-CLAVATA (WUS-CLV). Although CLV-like genes, such as FLORAL ORGAN NUMBER1 (FON1) and FON2, have been shown to be involved in maintenance of the reproductive meristems in rice (Oryza sativa), current understanding of meristem maintenance remains insufficient. In this article, we demonstrate that the FON2-LIKE CLE PROTEIN1 (FCP1) and FCP2 genes encoding proteins with similar CLE domains are involved in negative regulation of meristem maintenance in the vegetative phase. In addition, we found that WUSCHEL-RELATED HOMEOBOX4 (WOX4) promotes the undifferentiated state of the meristem in rice and that WOX4 function is associated with cytokinin action. Consistent with similarities in the shoot apical meristem phenotypes caused by overexpression of FCP1 and downregulation of WOX4, expression of WOX4 was negatively regulated by FCP1 (FCP2). Thus, FCP1/2 and WOX4 are likely to be involved in maintenance of the vegetative meristem in rice.

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