BYPASS1: synthesis of the mobile root-derived signal requires active root growth and arrests early leaf development
1 Department of Biology, University of Utah, 257 South 1400 East, Salt Lake City, Utah, 84112, USA
2 Biology Department, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, 27708, USA
BMC Plant Biology 2011, 11:28 doi:10.1186/1471-2229-11-28Published: 3 February 2011
The Arabidopsis bypass1 (bps1) mutant root produces a biologically active mobile compound that induces shoot growth arrest. However it is unknown whether the root retains the capacity to synthesize the mobile compound, or if only shoots of young seedlings are sensitive. It is also unknown how this compound induces arrest of shoot growth. This study investigated both of these questions using genetic, inhibitor, reporter gene, and morphological approaches.
Production of the bps1 root-synthesized mobile compound was found to require active root growth. Inhibition of postembryonic root growth, by depleting glutathione either genetically or chemically, allowed seedlings to escape shoot arrest. However, the treatments were not completely effective, as the first leaf pair remained radialized, but elongated. This result indicated that the embryonic root transiently synthesized a small amount of the mobile substance. In addition, providing glutathione later in vegetative development caused shoot growth arrest to be reinstated, revealing that these late-arising roots were still capable of producing the mobile substance, and that the older vegetative leaves were still responsive.
To gain insight into how leaf development responds to the mobile signal, leaf development was followed morphologically and using the CYCB1,1::GUS marker for G2/M phase cells. We found that arrest of leaf growth is a fully penetrant phenotype, and a dramatic decrease in G2/M phase cells was coincident with arrest. Analyses of stress phenotypes found that late in development, bps1 cotyledons produced necrotic lesions, however neither hydrogen peroxide nor superoxide were abundant as leaves underwent arrest.
bps1 roots appear to require active growth in order to produce the mobile bps1 signal, but the potential for this compound's synthesis is present both early and late during vegetative development. This prolonged capacity to synthesize and respond to the mobile compound is consistent with a possible role for the mobile compound in linking shoot growth to subterranean conditions. The specific growth-related responses in the shoot indicated that the mobile substance prevents full activation of cell division in leaves, although whether cell division is a direct response remains to be determined.