Periodic Lateral Root Priming: What Makes It Tick?
Conditioning small groups of root pericycle cells for future lateral root formation has a major impact on overall plant root architecture. This priming of lateral roots occurs rhythmically, involving temporal oscillations in auxin response in the root tip. During growth, this process generates a spatial pattern of prebranch sites, an early stage in lateral root formation characterized by a stably maintained high auxin response. To date, the molecular mechanism behind this rhythmicity has remained elusive. Some data implicate a cell-autonomous oscillation in gene expression, while others strongly support the importance of tissue-level modulations in auxin fluxes. Here, we summarize the experimental data on periodic lateral root priming. We present a theoretical framework that distinguishes between a priming signal and its subsequent memorization and show how major roles for auxin fluxes and gene expression naturally emerge from this framework. We then discuss three mechanisms that could potentially induce oscillations of auxin response: cell-autonomous oscillations, Turing-type patterning, and tissue-level oscillations in auxin fluxes, along with specific properties of lateral root priming that may be used to discern which type of mechanism is most likely to drive lateral root patterning. We conclude with suggestions for future experiments and modeling studies.
Laskowski, Marta, and Kirsten H. ten Tusscher. 2017. "Periodic Lateral Root Priming: What Makes It Tick?" Plant Cell 29(3): 432-444.
American Society of Plant Biologists
Polar auxin transport, Arabidopsis-thaliana, Cell-differentiation, System architecture, Developmental window, Organ initiation, Gene-expression, Pea-seedlings, Mechanism, Cytokinin