Phytochrome D acts in the shade-avoidance syndrome in Arabidopsis by controlling elongation growth and flowering time.
Shade avoidance in higher plants is regulated by the action of multiple phytochrome (phy) species that detect changes in the red/far-red ratio (R/FR) of incident light and initiate a redirection of growth and an acceleration of flowering. The phyB mutant of Arabidopsis is constitutively elongated and early flowering and displays attenuated responses to both reduced R/FR and end-of-day far-red light, conditions that induce strong shade-avoidance reactions in wild-type plants. This indicates that phyB plays an important role in the control of shade avoidance. In Arabidopsis phyB and phyD are the products of a recently duplicated gene and share approximately 80% identity. We investigated the role played by phyD in shade avoidance by analyzing the responses of phyD-deficient mutants. Compared with the monogenic phyB mutant, the phyB-phyD double mutant flowers early and has a smaller leaf area, phenotypes that are characteristic of shade avoidance. Furthermore, compared with the monogenic phyB mutant, the phyB-phyD double mutant shows a more attenuated response to a reduced R/FR for these responses. Compared with the phyA-phyB double mutant, the phyA-phyB-phyD triple mutant has elongated petioles and displays an enhanced elongation of internodes in response to end-of-day far-red light. These characteristics indicate that phyD acts in the shade-avoidance syndrome by controlling flowering time and leaf area and that phyC and/or phyE also play a role. (+info)
The mechanism of rhythmic ethylene production in sorghum. The role of phytochrome B and simulated shading.
Mutant sorghum (Sorghum bicolor [L.] Moench) deficient in functional phytochrome B exhibits reduced photoperiodic sensitivity and constitutively expresses a shade-avoidance phenotype. Under relatively bright, high red:far-red light, ethylene production by seedlings of wild-type and phytochrome B-mutant cultivars progresses through cycles in a circadian rhythm; however, the phytochrome B mutant produces ethylene peaks with approximately 10 times the amplitude of the wild type. Time-course northern blots show that the mutant's abundance of the 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylic acid (ACC) oxidase mRNA SbACO2 is cyclic and is commensurate with ethylene production, and that ACC oxidase activity follows the same pattern. Both SbACO2 abundance and ACC oxidase activity in the wild-type plant are very low under this regimen. ACC levels in the two cultivars did not demonstrate fluctuations coincident with the ethylene produced. Simulated shading caused the wild-type plant to mimic the phenotype of the mutant and to produce high amplitude rhythms of ethylene evolution. The circadian feature of the ethylene cycle is conditionally present in the mutant and absent in the wild-type plant under simulated shading. SbACO2 abundance in both cultivars demonstrates a high-amplitude diurnal cycle under these conditions; however, ACC oxidase activity, although elevated, does not exhibit a clear rhythm correlated with ethylene production. ACC levels in both cultivars show fluctuations corresponding to the ethylene rhythm previously observed. It appears that at least two separate mechanisms may be involved in generating high-amplitude ethylene rhythms in sorghum, one in response to the loss of phytochrome B function and another in response to shading. (+info)
The Arabidopsis photomorphogenic mutant hy1 is deficient in phytochrome chromophore biosynthesis as a result of a mutation in a plastid heme oxygenase.
The HY1 locus of Arabidopsis is necessary for phytochrome chromophore biosynthesis and is defined by mutants that show a long hypocotyl phenotype when grown in the light. We describe here the molecular cloning of the HY1 gene by using chromosome walking and mutant complementation. The product of the HY1 gene shows significant similarity to animal heme oxygenases and contains a possible transit peptide for transport to plastids. Heme oxygenase activity was detected in the HY1 protein expressed in Escherichia coli. Heme oxygenase catalyzes the oxygenation of heme to biliverdin, an activity that is necessary for phytochrome chromophore biosynthesis. The predicted transit peptide is sufficient to transport the green fluorescent protein into chloroplasts. The accumulation of the HY1 protein in plastids was detected by using immunoblot analysis with an anti-HY1 antiserum. These results indicate that the Arabidopsis HY1 gene encodes a plastid heme oxygenase necessary for phytochrome chromophore biosynthesis. (+info)
Light receptor kinases in plants!
Plants must adapt to a capricious light environment, but the mechanism by which light signals are transmitted to cause changes in development has long eluded us. The search might be over, however, as two photoreceptors, phytochrome and NPH1, have been shown to autophosphorylate in a light-dependent fashion. (+info)
Loss of the circadian clock-associated protein 1 in Arabidopsis results in altered clock-regulated gene expression.
Little is known about plant circadian oscillators, in spite of how important they are to sessile plants, which require accurate timekeepers that enable the plants to respond to their environment. Previously, we identified a circadian clock-associated (CCA1) gene that encodes an Myb-related protein that is associated with phytochrome control and circadian regulation in plants. To understand the role CCA1 plays in phytochrome and circadian regulation, we have isolated an Arabidopsis line with a T DNA insertion that results in the loss of CCA1 RNA, of CCA1 protein, and of an Lhcb-promoter binding activity. This mutation affects the circadian expression of all four clock-controlled genes that we examined. The results show that, despite their similarity, CCA1 and LHY are only partially redundant. The lack of CCA1 also affects the phytochrome regulation of gene expression, suggesting that CCA1 has an additional role in a signal transduction pathway from light, possibly acting at the point of integration between phytochrome and the clock. Our results indicate that CCA1 is an important clock-associated protein involved in circadian regulation of gene expression. (+info)
Overexpression of Arabidopsis phytochrome B inhibits phytochrome A function in the presence of sucrose.
Overexpression of phytochrome B (phyB) in Arabidopsis has previously been demonstrated to result in dominant negative interference of phytochrome A (phyA)-mediated hypocotyl growth inhibition in far-red (FR) light. This phenomenon has been examined further in this study and has been found to be dependent on the FR fluence rate and on the availability of metabolizable sugars in the growth medium. Poorly metabolized sugars capable of activating the putative hexokinase sensory function were not effective in eliciting the phytochrome interference response. Overexpressed phyB lacking the chromophore-binding site was also effective at inhibiting the phyA response, especially at higher fluence rates of FR. Overexpressed phyB produces the dominant negative phenotype without any apparent effect on phyA abundance or degradation. It is possible that phyA and phyB interact with a common reaction partner but that either the energy state of the cell or a separate sugar-signaling mechanism modulates the phytochrome-signaling interactions. (+info)
SPA1, a WD-repeat protein specific to phytochrome A signal transduction.
The five members of the phytochrome photoreceptor family of Arabidopsis thaliana control morphogenesis differentially in response to light. Genetic analysis has identified a signaling pathway that is specifically activated by phytochrome A. A component in this pathway, SPA1 (for "suppressor of phyA-105"), functions in repression of photomorphogenesis and is required for normal photosensory specificity of phytochrome A. Molecular cloning of the SPA1 gene indicates that SPA1 is a WD (tryptophan-aspartic acid)-repeat protein that also shares sequence similarity with protein kinases. SPA1 can localize to the nucleus, suggesting a possible function in phytochrome A-specific regulation of gene expression. (+info)
Antagonistic actions of Arabidopsis cryptochromes and phytochrome B in the regulation of floral induction.
The Arabidopsis photoreceptors cry1, cry2 and phyB are known to play roles in the regulation of flowering time, for which the molecular mechanisms remain unclear. We have previously hypothesized that phyB mediates a red-light inhibition of floral initiation and cry2 mediates a blue-light inhibition of the phyB function. Studies of the cry2/phyB double mutant provide direct evidence in support of this hypothesis. The function of cryptochromes in floral induction was further investigated using the cry2/cry1 double mutants. The cry2/cry1 double mutants showed delayed flowering in monochromatic blue light, whereas neither monogenic cry1 nor cry2 mutant exhibited late flowering in blue light. This result suggests that, in addition to the phyB-dependent function, cry2 also acts redundantly with cry1 to promote floral initiation in a phyB-independent manner. To understand how photoreceptors regulate the transition from vegetative growth to reproductive development, we examined the effect of sequential illumination by blue light and red light on the flowering time of plants. We found that there was a light-quality-sensitive phase of plant development, during which the quality of light exerts a profound influence on flowering time. After this developmental stage, which is between approximately day-1 to day-7 post germination, plants are committed to floral initiation and the quality of light has little effect on the flowering time. Mutations in either the PHYB gene or both the CRY1 and CRY2 genes resulted in the loss of the light-quality-sensitive phase manifested during floral development. The commitment time of floral transition, defined by a plant's sensitivity to light quality, coincides with the commitment time of inflorescence development revealed previously by a plant's sensitivity to light quantity - the photoperiod. Therefore, the developmental mechanism resulting in the commitment to flowering appears to be the direct target of the antagonistic actions of the photoreceptors. (+info)