Open Access Open Badges Research article

Analysis of TTG1 function in Arabis alpina

Divykriti Chopra1, Heike Wolff1, Johannes Span1, Swen Schellmann1, George Coupland2, Maria C Albani12, Andrea Schrader1 and Martin Hülskamp1*

Author Affiliations

1 Botanical Institute, Biocenter, Cologne University, Zülpicher Straße 47b, 50674 Cologne, Germany

2 Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding, Carl-von-Linne-Weg 10, 50829 Cologne, Germany

For all author emails, please log on.

BMC Plant Biology 2014, 14:16  doi:10.1186/1471-2229-14-16

Published: 10 January 2014



In Arabidopsis thaliana (A. thaliana) the WD40 protein TRANSPARENT TESTA GLABRA1 (TTG1) controls five traits relevant for the adaptation of plants to environmental changes including the production of proanthocyanidin, anthocyanidin, seed coat mucilage, trichomes and root hairs. The analysis of different Brassicaceae species suggests that the function of TTG1 is conserved within the family.


In this work, we studied the function of TTG1 in Arabis alpina (A. alpina). A comparison of wild type and two Aattg1 alleles revealed that AaTTG1 is involved in the regulation of all five traits. A detailed analysis of the five traits showed striking phenotypic differences between A. alpina and A. thaliana such that trichome formation occurs also at later stages of leaf development and that root hairs form at non-root hair positions.


The evolutionary conservation of the regulation of the five traits by TTG1 on the one hand and the striking phenotypic differences make A. alpina a very interesting genetic model system to study the evolution of TTG1-dependent gene regulatory networks at a functional level.

Arabis alpina; TTG1; Trichomes; Root hairs; Pro-anthocyanidin; Anthocyanidin; Seed coat mucilage