The prominent and evolutionarily ancient role of the plant hormone auxin is the regulation of cell expansion. Cell expansion requires ordered arrangement of the cytoskeleton but molecular mechanisms underlying its regulation by signalling molecules including auxin are unknown. Here we show in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana that in elongating cells exogenous application of auxin or redistribution of endogenous auxin induces very rapid microtubule re-orientation from transverse to longitudinal, coherent with the inhibition of cell expansion. This fast auxin effect requires auxin binding protein 1 (ABP1) and involves a contribution of downstream signalling components such as ROP6 GTPase, ROP-interactive protein RIC1 and the microtubule-severing protein katanin. These components are required for rapid auxin- and ABP1-mediated re-orientation of microtubules to regulate cell elongation in roots and dark-grown hypocotyls as well as asymmetric growth during gravitropic responses.
Cell expansion is an increase in cell size and thus plays an essential role in plant growth and development. Phytohormones and the primary plant cell wall play major roles in the complex process of cell expansion. In shoot tissues, cell expansion requires the auxin receptor AUXIN BINDING PROTEIN1 (ABP1), but the mechanism by which ABP1 affects expansion remains unknown. We analyzed the effect of functional inactivation of ABP1 on transcriptomic changes in dark-grown hypocotyls and investigated the consequences of gene expression on cell wall composition and cell expansion. Molecular and genetic evidence indicates that ABP1 affects the expression of a broad range of cell wall-related genes, especially cell wall remodeling genes, mainly via an SCF(TIR/AFB)-dependent pathway. ABP1 also functions in the modulation of hemicellulose xyloglucan structure. Furthermore, fucosidase-mediated defucosylation of xyloglucan, but not biosynthesis of nonfucosylated xyloglucan, rescued dark-grown hypocotyl lengthening of ABP1 knockdown seedlings. In muro remodeling of xyloglucan side chains via an ABP1-dependent pathway appears to be of critical importance for temporal and spatial control of cell expansion.
Auxin is a major plant hormone that controls most aspects of plant growth and development. Auxin is perceived by two distinct classes of receptors: transport inhibitor response 1 (TIR1, or auxin-related F-box (AFB)) and auxin/indole-3-acetic acid (AUX/IAA) coreceptors, that control transcriptional responses to auxin, and the auxin-binding protein 1 (ABP1), that controls a wide variety of growth and developmental processes. To date, the mode of action of ABP1 is still poorly understood and its functional interaction with TIR1/AFB-AUX/IAA coreceptors remains elusive. Here we combine genetic and biochemical approaches to gain insight into the integration of these two pathways. We find that ABP1 is genetically upstream of TIR1/AFBs; ABP1 knockdown leads to an enhanced degradation of AUX/IAA repressors, independently of its effects on endocytosis, through the SCF(TIR1/AFB) E3 ubiquitin ligase pathway. Combining positive and negative regulation of SCF ubiquitin-dependent pathways might be a common mechanism conferring tight control of hormone-mediated responses.
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