GDP-L-fucose is required for boundary definition in plants

The CUP-SHAPED COTYLEDON (CUC) transcription factors control plant boundary formation, thus allowing the emergence of novel growth axes. While the developmental roles of the CUC genes in different organs and across species are well characterized, upstream and downstream events that contribute to their function are still poorly understood. To identify new players in this network, we performed a suppressor screen of CUC2g-m4, a line overexpressing CUC2 that has highly serrated leaves. We identified a mutation that simplifies leaf shape and affects MURUS1 (MUR1), which is responsible for GDP-L-fucose production. Using detailed morphometric analysis, we show that GDP-L-fucose has an essential role in leaf shape acquisition by sustaining differential growth at the leaf margins. Accordingly, reduced CUC2 expression levels are observed in mur1 leaves. Furthermore, genetic analyses reveal a conserved role for GDP-L-fucose in different developmental contexts where it contributes to organ separation in the same pathway as CUC2. Taken together, our results reveal that GDP-L-fucose is necessary for proper establishment of boundary domains in various developmental contexts.

Journal of Experimental Botany, erx402

DOI: 10.1093/jxb/erx402

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Combinations of Mutations Sufficient to Alter Arabidopsis Leaf Dissection.

Leaves show a wide range of shapes that results from the combinatory variations of two main parameters: the relative duration of the morphogenetic phase and the pattern of dissection of the leaf margin. To further understand the mechanisms controlling leaf shape, we have studied the interactions between several loci leading to increased dissection of the Arabidopsis leaf margins. Thus, we have used (i) mutants in which miR164 regulation of the CUC2 gene is impaired, (ii) plants overexpressing miR319/miRJAW that down-regulates multiple TCP genes and (iii) plants overexpressing the STIMPY/WOX9 gene. Through the analysis of their effects on leaf shape and KNOX I gene expression, we show that these loci act in different pathways. We show, in particular, that they have synergetic effects and that plants combining two or three of these loci show dramatic modifications of their leaf shapes. Finally, we present a working model for the role of these loci during leaf development.

Plants (Basel), 2013, 2(2):230-47.

DOI: 10.3390/plants2020230

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