Sequential action of FRUITFULL as a modulator of the activity of the floral regulators SVP and SOC1

Vicente Balanzà, Irene Martínez-Fernández, Cristina Ferrándiz
Journal of Experimental Botany 2014, 65 (4): 1193-203
The role in flowering time of the MADS-box transcription factor fruitfulL (FUL) has been proposed in many works. FUL has been connected to several flowering pathways as a target of the photoperiod, ambient temperature, and age pathways and it is has been shown to promote flowering in a partially redundant manner with suppressor of overexpression of constans 1 (SOC1). However, the position of FUL in these genetic networks, as well as the functional output of FUL activity during floral transition, remains unclear. In this work, a genetic approach has been undertaken to understand better the functional hierarchies involving FUL and other MADS-box factors with well established roles as floral integrators such as SOC1, short vegetative phase (svp) or flowering locus C (FLC). Our results suggest a prominent role of FUL in promoting reproductive transition when photoinductive signalling is suppressed by short-day conditions or by high levels of FLC expression, as in non-vernalized winter ecotypes. A model is proposed where the sequential formation of FUL-SVP and FUL-SOC1 heterodimers may mediate the vegetative and meristem identity transitions, counteracting the repressive effect of FLC and SVP on flowering.

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